And here we are once again for another week of historical events. I’m quite glad I decided to do this by the week, since it gives me the opportunity to prepare ahead of time to write something based on or associated with any momentous events or otherwise exciting types of things. I certainly won’t always be able to keep pace with what’s happened in history every week, but it could come in handy when I’m not quite sure how to proceed or what to post next. It could be good for some suggestions. Let’s see if there’s anything good this week.
1891 – Federico Moreno Torroba, Spanish composer
2003 – Goffredo Petrassi, Italian composer and conductor
A couple of important people in the list for this day. d’Albert has a sonata that’s been on and off in my rotation for a while. He apparently also had a long list of ex-wives (I think that was him).
No events. Births:
1915 – Carlos Surinach, Spanish-Catalan composer and conductor
1921 – Halim El-Dabh, Egyptian-American composer (electronic music from an old Egyptian? maybe worth checking into)
1921 – Kaljo Raid, Estonian composer, cellist and clergyman
1936 – Aribert Reimann, German pianist and composer
1943 – Zoltán Jeney, Hungarian pianist and composer
1947 – Pēteris Plakidis, Latvian pianist and composer
1925 – Moritz Moszkowski, Polish-German pianist and composer
1999 – Miłosz Magin, Polish pianist and composer
2008 – Leonard Rosenman, American composer and conductor
Everyone knows Vivaldi, and Haitink is an important one. He’s a fantastic conductor, and I have much of his Tchaikovsky, some of his Mahler. I find him to be a reliable interpreter of almost everything, or at least a good place to start. I find him to be quite an enjoyable person to listen to in interviews and things as well.
1748 – William Shield, English violinist and composer
1931 – Barry Tuckwell, Australian horn player
1948 – Richard Hickox, English conductor
1954 – Jack Stamp, American conductor and composer (played some of this guy’s pieces before).
1991 – Daniil Trifonov, Russian pianist (this kid is sickeningly talented, or sickeningly young, or maybe they exacerbate one another. Amazing).
1953 – Sergei Prokofiev, Russian pianist, composer, and conductor (this guy is important; he also apparently died the same day as Stalin, like within hours of each other.)
And that’s it for this day. Moving on to 3/6
No musical events. Births:
And that’s about it. On to deaths:
1967 – Zoltán Kodály, Hungarian composer
Well, not a lot happened today, did it? Sousa is important, and I’ve heard of Kondrashin, but I forget in the conducting/recording of what rare piece I couldn’t find anywhere else. Oh, and that guy who wrote like, every march that an American could hum if requested to do so. Would more than likely be Sousa.
Nothing to see here. Births:
1875 – Maurice Ravel, French composer (What a guy. Featured him recently already, and if I weren’t trying to branch out and keep things a bit fresher, I’d feature one of his pieces. I still may…. I still may)
Also, my piano teacher, apparently.
1981 – Kirill Kondrashin, Russian conductor (This guy was born earlier in the week. Just the previous day, in fact. He lived to be a day over 67 years old).
Slim pickings this week…. That Ravel, though…
There haven’t been many events lately. I always find those to be the most exciting.
1904 – Nikos Skalkottas, Greek classical composer (I’m glad they listed him this way so I didn’t have to go look him up and decide whether he merited inclusion.)
1911 – Alan Hovhaness, Armenian-American composer (Hovhaness made a recent appearance as well, for the only piece of music of his that I have. I need to get my hands on some more).
1961 – Thomas Beecham, English conductor (Important conductor, but apparently not such a nice guy. I remember reading that during a famous performance [I think actually a recording] of Sibelius 1, he can be heard yelling at the orchestra from the podium…)
1983 – William Walton, English composer
Seriously, not a lot going on this week.
1842 – Giuseppe Verdi‘s third opera, Nabucco, receives its première performance in Milan; its success establishes Verdi as one of Italy’s foremost opera writers.
Okay, well maybe just one. Births:
1910 – Samuel Barber, American pianist and composer (Featured here more than once, also important. Want to get around to some of his solo works).
And that’s it for this week’s events. I’m not sure that there’s anything new or exciting enough to spur a related post, but we shall see.
Two things about the process of composing this feature every week:
- It gets me to thinking about the history and future of music. It’s interesting to see how things fall into place in history, what things happened relative to one another, and what things may or may not have affected or influenced others. This is part of the serendipity of music that fascinates me. Who heard what as a child or who studied with whom and on and on. Some of this bears itself out in the dates and events I see here and I find it interesting.
- It also serves as an interesting to do list of some important people or things to look up. I’ll read some of these Wikipedia articles as I’m going through them and read about what seem to be some captivating people of whom I have never heard. Perhaps that one glance at a name like Nikos Skalkottas above (whom I intend to investigate further) is all it takes to discover something wonderful and new. Perhaps in among all these names, all four of my readers could discover something fresh or intriguing. That would be nice.