Charles-Valentin Alkan was a French-Jewish composer and virtuoso pianist. Alkan earned many awards at the Conservatoire de Paris, which he entered before he was six and his career in the salons and concert halls of Paris was marked by his occasional long withdrawals from public performance, for personal reasons. During this period he published, among other works, his collections of studies in all the major keys. The latter includes his Symphony for Solo Piano and Concerto for Solo Piano, Alkan emerged from self-imposed retirement in the 1870s to give a series of recitals that were attended by a new generation of French musicians. Alkans attachment to his Jewish origins is displayed both in his life and his work and he was the first composer to incorporate Jewish melodies in art music. Fluent in Hebrew and Greek, he devoted time to a complete new translation of the Bible into French. This work, like many of his compositions, is now lost. Alkan never married, but his presumed son Élie-Miriam Delaborde was, like Alkan, following his death Alkans music became neglected, supported by only a few musicians including Ferruccio Busoni, Egon Petri and Kaikhosru Sorabji.
From the late 1960s onwards, led by Raymond Lewenthal and Ronald Smith, many pianists have recorded his music, Alkan was born Charles-Valentin Morhange on 30 November 1813 at 1, Rue de Braque in Paris to Alkan Morhange and Julie Morhange, née Abraham. Alkan Morhange was descended from a long-established Jewish Ashkenazic community in the region of Metz, Charles-Valentin was the second of six children – one elder sister and four younger brothers, his birth certificate indicates that he was named after a neighbour who witnessed the birth. Alkan Morhange supported the family as a musician and as the proprietor of a music school in le Marais. At an early age, Charles-Valentin and his siblings adopted their fathers first name as their last. His brother Napoléon became professor of solfège at the Conservatoire, his brother Maxim had a career writing music for Parisian theatres. His brother Ernest was a professional flautist, while the youngest brother Gustave was to publish various dances for the piano and he entered the Conservatoire de Paris at an unusually early age, and studied both piano and organ.
The records of his auditions survive in the Archives Nationales in Paris, at his solfège audition on 3 July 1819, when he was just over 5 years 7 months, the examiners noted Alkan as having a pretty little voice. The profession of Alkan Morhange is given as music-paper ruler, at Charles-Valentins piano audition on 6 October 1820, when he was nearly seven, the examiners comment This child has amazing abilities. Alkan became a favourite of his teacher at the Conservatoire, Joseph Zimmermann, who taught Georges Bizet, César Franck, Charles Gounod, at the age of seven, Alkan won a first prize for solfège and in years prizes in piano and organ. At the age of seven-and-a-half he gave his first public performance, appearing as a violinist and playing an air, Alkans Opus 1, a set of variations for piano based on a theme by Daniel Steibelt, dates from 1828, when he was 14 years old
Oscar Emmanuel Peterson, CC, CQ, OOnt was a Canadian jazz pianist and composer. He was called the Maharaja of the keyboard by Duke Ellington and he released over 200 recordings, won eight Grammy Awards, and received numerous other awards and honours. He is considered one of the greatest jazz pianists, and played thousands of concerts worldwide in a career lasting more than 60 years, Peterson was born to immigrants from the West Indies, his father worked as a porter for Canadian Pacific Railway. Peterson grew up in the neighbourhood of Little Burgundy in Montreal and it was in this predominantly black neighbourhood that he found himself surrounded by the jazz culture that flourished in the early 20th century. At the age of five, Peterson began honing his skills with the trumpet, however, a bout of tuberculosis when he was seven prevented him from playing the trumpet again, and so he directed all his attention to the piano. His father, Daniel Peterson, a trumpeter and pianist, was one of his first music teachers.
Young Oscar was persistent at practicing scales and classical études daily, meanwhile, he was captivated by traditional jazz and learned several ragtime pieces and especially the boogie-woogie. At that time Peterson was called the Brown Bomber of the Boogie-Woogie, at the age of nine Peterson played piano with control that impressed professional musicians. For many years his piano studies included four to six hours of practice daily, only in his years did he decrease his daily practice to just one or two hours. In 1940, at fourteen years of age, Peterson won the music competition organized by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. After that victory, he dropped out of school and became a professional pianist working for a radio show. In his own words, Tatum scared me to death, Tatum was a model for Petersons musicianship during the 1940s and 1950s. Tatum and Peterson eventually became friends, although Peterson was always shy about being compared with Tatum. Peterson credited his sister—a piano teacher in Montreal who taught several other Canadian jazz musicians—with being an important teacher, building on Tatums pianism and aesthetics, Peterson absorbed Tatums musical influences, notably from piano concertos by Sergei Rachmaninoff.
An important step in Petersons career was joining impresario Norman Granzs labels, Granz discovered Peterson in a peculiar manner. As the impresario was being taken to Montreal airport by cab, Granz was so smitten by what he heard that he ordered the driver to take him to the club so that he could meet the pianist. In 1949, Granz introduced Peterson at a Carnegie Hall Jazz at the Philharmonic show in New York City, so was born a lasting relationship and Granz remained Petersons manager for most of his career. This was more than a relationship, Peterson praised Granz for standing up for him
A synthesizer is an electronic musical instrument that generates electric signals that are converted to sound through instrument amplifiers and loudspeakers or headphones. Synthesizers may either imitate instruments like piano, Hammond organ, vocals, natural sounds like ocean waves, etc. or generate new electronic timbres. Synthesizers without built-in controllers are called sound modules, and are controlled via USB, MIDI or CV/gate using a controller device. Synthesizers use various methods to generate electronic signals, synthesizers were first used in pop music in the 1960s. In the 1970s, synths were used in disco, especially in the late 1970s, in the 1980s, the invention of the relatively inexpensive, mass market Yamaha DX7 synth made synthesizers widely available. 1980s pop and dance music often made use of synthesizers. In the 2010s, synthesizers are used in genres of pop, rock. Contemporary classical music composers from the 20th and 21st century write compositions for synthesizer, the beginnings of the synthesizer are difficult to trace, as it is difficult to draw a distinction between synthesizers and some early electric or electronic musical instruments.
One of the earliest electric musical instruments, the telegraph, was invented in 1876 by American electrical engineer Elisha Gray. He accidentally discovered the sound generation from a self-vibrating electromechanical circuit and this musical telegraph used steel reeds with oscillations created by electromagnets transmitted over a telegraph line. Gray built a simple loudspeaker device into models, consisting of a diaphragm in a magnetic field. This instrument was a remote electromechanical musical instrument that used telegraphy, though it lacked an arbitrary sound-synthesis function, some have erroneously called it the first synthesizer. In 1897, Thaddeus Cahill invented the Teleharmonium, which used dynamos, and was capable of additive synthesis like the Hammond organ, Cahills business was unsuccessful for various reasons, and similar but more compact instruments were subsequently developed, such as electronic and tonewheel organs. In 1906, American engineer, Lee De Forest ushered in the electronics age and he invented the first amplifying vacuum tube, called the Audion tube.
This led to new entertainment technologies, including radio and sound films, ondes Martenot and Trautonium were continuously developed for several decades, finally developing qualities similar to synthesizers. In the 1920s, Arseny Avraamov developed various systems of graphic sonic art, in 1938, USSR engineer Yevgeny Murzin designed a compositional tool called ANS, one of the earliest real-time additive synthesizers using optoelectronics. The earliest polyphonic synthesizers were developed in Germany and the United States, during the three years that Hammond manufactured this model,1,069 units were shipped, but production was discontinued at the start of World War II. Both instruments were the forerunners of the electronic organs and polyphonic synthesizers
It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, itself heavily influenced by blues and blues and country music. Rock music drew strongly on a number of genres such as electric blues and folk. Musically, rock has centered on the guitar, usually as part of a rock group with electric bass guitar. Typically, rock is song-based music usually with a 4/4 time signature using a verse-chorus form, like pop music, lyrics often stress romantic love but address a wide variety of other themes that are frequently social or political in emphasis. Punk was an influence into the 1980s on the subsequent development of subgenres, including new wave, post-punk. From the 1990s alternative rock began to rock music and break through into the mainstream in the form of grunge, Britpop. Similarly, 1970s punk culture spawned the visually distinctive goth and emo subcultures and this trio of instruments has often been complemented by the inclusion of other instruments, particularly keyboards such as the piano, Hammond organ and synthesizers.
The basic rock instrumentation was adapted from the blues band instrumentation. A group of musicians performing rock music is termed a rock band or rock group, Rock music is traditionally built on a foundation of simple unsyncopated rhythms in a 4/4 meter, with a repetitive snare drum back beat on beats two and four. Melodies are often derived from older musical modes, including the Dorian and Mixolydian, harmonies range from the common triad to parallel fourths and fifths and dissonant harmonic progressions. Critics have stressed the eclecticism and stylistic diversity of rock, because of its complex history and tendency to borrow from other musical and cultural forms, it has been argued that it is impossible to bind rock music to a rigidly delineated musical definition. These themes were inherited from a variety of sources, including the Tin Pan Alley pop tradition, folk music and rhythm, as a result, it has been seen as articulating the concerns of this group in both style and lyrics. Christgau, writing in 1972, said in spite of some exceptions and roll usually implies an identification of male sexuality, according to Simon Frith rock was something more than pop, something more than rock and roll.
Rock musicians combined an emphasis on skill and technique with the concept of art as artistic expression, original. The foundations of music are in rock and roll, which originated in the United States during the late 1940s and early 1950s. Its immediate origins lay in a melding of various musical genres of the time, including rhythm and blues and gospel music, with country. In 1951, Ohio disc jockey Alan Freed began playing rhythm and blues music for a multi-racial audience, debate surrounds which record should be considered the first rock and roll record. Other artists with rock and roll hits included Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, Fats Domino, Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis
A musical keyboard is the set of adjacent depressible levers or keys on a musical instrument. Depressing a key on the causes the instrument to produce sounds, either by mechanically striking a string or tine, plucking a string, causing air to flow through a pipe. On electric and electronic keyboards, depressing a key connects a circuit, since the most commonly encountered keyboard instrument is the piano, the keyboard layout is often referred to as the piano keyboard. The twelve notes of the Western musical scale are laid out with the lowest note on the left, because these keys were traditionally covered in ivory they are often called the white notes or white keys. The keys for the remaining five notes—which are not part of the C major scale— are raised, because these keys receive less wear, they are often made of black colored wood and called the black notes or black keys. The pattern repeats at the interval of an octave, the arrangement of longer keys for C major with intervening, shorter keys for the intermediate semitones dates to the 15th century.
The break was between middle C and C-sharp, or outside of Iberia between B and C, broken keyboards reappeared in 1842 with the harmonium, the split occurring at E4/F4. The reverse-colored keys on Hammond organs such as the B3, C3, the chromatic compass of keyboard instruments has tended to increase. Harpsichords often extended over five octaves in the 18th century, while most pianos manufactured since about 1870 have 88 keys, some modern pianos have even more notes. While modern synthesizer keyboards commonly have either 61,76 or 88 keys, organs normally have 61 keys per manual, though some spinet models have 44 or 49. An organ pedalboard is a keyboard with long pedals that are played by the organists feet, pedalboards vary in size from 12 to 32 notes. In a typical layout, black note keys have uniform width. In the larger gaps between the keys, the width of the natural notes C, D and E differ slightly from the width of keys F, G, A and B. This allows close to uniform spacing of 12 keys per octave while maintaining uniformity of seven natural keys per octave, over the last three hundred years, the octave span distance found on historical keyboard instruments has ranged from as little as 125 mm to as much as 170 mm.
Several reduced-size standards have been proposed and marketed, a 15/16 size and the 7/8 DS Standard keyboard developed by Christopher Donison in the 1970s and developed and marketed by Steinbuhler & Company. There have been variations in the design of the keyboard to address technical and musical issues, thus, an octave would have eight white keys and only four black keys. During the sixteenth century, when instruments were tuned in meantone temperament, some harpsichords were constructed with the G♯. The broken octave, a variation of the short octave
Carl Maria von Weber
Carl Maria Friedrich Ernst von Weber was a German composer, pianist and critic, one of the first significant composers of the Romantic school. Webers operas Der Freischütz, Euryanthe and Oberon greatly influenced the development of the Romantische Oper in Germany, a brilliant pianist himself, Weber composed four sonatas, two concertos and the Konzertstück in F minor, which influenced composers such as Chopin and Mendelssohn. The Konzertstück provided a new model for the one-movement concerto in several contrasting sections, Webers shorter piano pieces, such as the Invitation to the Dance, were orchestrated by Berlioz, while his Polacca Brillante was set for piano and orchestra by Liszt. Webers compositions for clarinet and horn occupy an important place in the musical repertoire. His compositions for the clarinet, which include two concertos, a concertino, a quintet, a duo concertante, and variations on a theme from his opera Silvana, are performed today. His Concertino for Horn and Orchestra requires the performer to simultaneously produce two notes by humming while playing—a technique known as multiphonics and his bassoon concerto and the Andante e Rondo ungarese are popular with bassoonists.
Webers contribution to vocal and choral music is significant and his body of Catholic religious music was highly popular in 19th-century Germany, and he composed one of the earliest song cycles, Die Temperamente beim Verluste der Geliebten. Weber was notable as one of the first conductors to conduct without a piano or violin and his operas influenced the work of opera composers, especially in Germany, such as Marschner and Wagner, as well as several nationalist 19th-century composers such as Glinka. Homage has been paid to Weber by 20th-century composers such as Debussy, Mahler, Weber wrote music journalism and was interested in folksong, and learned lithography to engrave his own works. Weber was born in Eutin, Bishopric of Lübeck, the eldest of the three children of Franz Anton von Weber and his wife, Genovefa Weber, a Viennese singer. The von was an affectation, Franz Anton von Weber was not actually an aristocrat, both his parents were Catholic and originally came from the far south of Germany.
Franz Anton began his career as a officer in the service of the Duchy of Holstein. In 1787 Franz Anton went on to Hamburg where he founded a theatrical company, Franz Antons half-brother, married Cäcilia Stamm and had four musical daughters, Aloysia and Sophie, all of whom became notable singers. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart attempted to woo Aloysia, composing pieces for her. But after she rejected his advances, Mozart went on to marry Constanze, a gifted violinist, Franz Anton had ambitions of turning Carl into a child prodigy like Franzs nephew-by-marriage, Mozart. Carl was born with a hip disease and did not begin to walk until he was four. But by then, he was already a singer and pianist. Webers father gave him an education, which was however interrupted by the familys constant moves
Chamber music is a form of classical music that is composed for a small group of instruments—traditionally a group that could fit in a palace chamber or a large room. Most broadly, it includes any art music that is performed by a number of performers. However, by convention, it usually does not include solo instrument performances, because of its intimate nature, chamber music has been described as the music of friends. Playing chamber music requires special skills, both musical and social, that differ from the skills required for playing solo or symphonic works, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe described chamber music as four rational people conversing. The analogy to conversation recurs in descriptions and analyses of chamber music compositions, from its earliest beginnings in the Medieval period to the present, chamber music has been a reflection of the changes in the technology and the society that produced it. During the Middle Ages and the early Renaissance, instruments were used primarily as accompaniment for singers, String players would play along with the melody line sung by the singer.
There were purely instrumental ensembles, often of stringed precursors of the violin family, some analysts consider the origin of classical instrumental ensembles to be the sonata da camera and the sonata da chiesa. These were compositions for one to five or more instruments, the sonata da camera was a suite of slow and fast movements, interspersed with dance tunes, the sonata da chiesa was the same, but the dances were omitted. These forms gradually developed into the trio sonata of the Baroque – two treble instruments and an instrument, often with a keyboard or other chording instrument filling in the harmony. Both the bass instrument and the instrument would play the basso continuo part. During the Baroque period, chamber music as a genre was not clearly defined, works could be played on any variety of instruments, in orchestral or chamber ensembles. The Art of Fugue by Johann Sebastian Bach, for example, sometimes composers mixed movements for chamber ensembles with orchestral movements.
Telemanns Tafelmusik, for example, has five sets of movements for various combinations of instruments, Baroque chamber music was often contrapuntal, that is, each instrument played the same melodic materials at different times, creating a complex, interwoven fabric of sound. Because each instrument was playing essentially the same melodies, all the instruments were equal, in the trio sonata, there is often no ascendent or solo instrument, but all three instruments share equal importance. In the second half of the 18th century, tastes began to change, many preferred a new, lighter Galant style. And clearly defined melody and bass to the complexities of counterpoint, now a new custom arose that gave birth to a new form of chamber music, the serenade. Patrons invited street musicians to play evening concerts below the balconies of their homes, their friends and musicians commissioned composers to write suitable suites of dances and tunes, for groups of two to five or six players. These works were called serenades, divertimenti, or cassations, the young Joseph Haydn was commissioned to write several of these
Ludwig van Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he one of the most famous. His best-known compositions include 9 symphonies,5 piano concertos,1 violin concerto,32 piano sonatas,16 string quartets, his great Mass the Missa solemnis, and one opera, Fidelio. At the age of 21 he moved to Vienna, where he began studying composition with Joseph Haydn and he lived in Vienna until his death. By his late 20s his hearing began to deteriorate, and by the last decade of his life he was almost completely deaf. In 1811 he gave up conducting and performing in public but continued to compose, many of his most admired works come from these last 15 years of his life. Beethoven was the grandson of Ludwig van Beethoven, a musician from the town of Mechelen in the Duchy of Brabant in the Flemish region of what is now Belgium, who at the age of twenty moved to Bonn. Ludwig was employed as a singer at the court of the Elector of Cologne, eventually rising to become, in 1761.
The portrait he commissioned of himself towards the end of his life remained proudly displayed in his grandsons rooms as a talisman of his musical heritage. Ludwig had one son, who worked as a tenor in the musical establishment and gave keyboard. Johann married Maria Magdalena Keverich in 1767, she was the daughter of Johann Heinrich Keverich, Beethoven was born of this marriage in Bonn. There is no record of the date of his birth, however. Of the seven children born to Johann van Beethoven, only Ludwig, the second-born, caspar Anton Carl was born on 8 April 1774, and Nikolaus Johann, the youngest, was born on 2 October 1776. Beethovens first music teacher was his father and he had other local teachers, the court organist Gilles van den Eeden, Tobias Friedrich Pfeiffer, and Franz Rovantini. Beethovens musical talent was obvious at a young age, some time after 1779, Beethoven began his studies with his most important teacher in Bonn, Christian Gottlob Neefe, who was appointed the Courts Organist in that year.
Neefe taught Beethoven composition, and by March 1783 had helped him write his first published composition, Beethoven soon began working with Neefe as assistant organist, at first unpaid, and as a paid employee of the court chapel conducted by the Kapellmeister Andrea Luchesi. His first three piano sonatas, named Kurfürst for their dedication to the Elector Maximilian Friedrich, were published in 1783, Maximilian Frederick noticed Beethovens talent early, and subsidised and encouraged the young mans musical studies. Maximilian Fredericks successor as the Elector of Bonn was Maximilian Francis, the youngest son of Empress Maria Theresa of Austria, echoing changes made in Vienna by his brother Joseph, he introduced reforms based on Enlightenment philosophy, with increased support for education and the arts
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, baptised as Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart, was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. Born in Salzburg, he showed prodigious ability from his earliest childhood, already competent on keyboard and violin, he composed from the age of five and performed before European royalty. At 17, Mozart was engaged as a musician at the Salzburg court, while visiting Vienna in 1781, he was dismissed from his Salzburg position. He chose to stay in the capital, where he achieved fame, during his final years in Vienna, he composed many of his best-known symphonies and operas, and portions of the Requiem, which was largely unfinished at the time of his death. The circumstances of his death have been much mythologized. He was survived by his wife Constanze and two sons and he composed more than 600 works, many acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, chamber and choral music. He is among the most enduringly popular of classical composers, Ludwig van Beethoven composed his own early works in the shadow of Mozart, and Joseph Haydn wrote, posterity will not see such a talent again in 100 years.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born on 27 January 1756 to Leopold Mozart and Anna Maria, née Pertl and this was the capital of the Archbishopric of Salzburg, an ecclesiastic principality in what is now Austria, part of the Holy Roman Empire. He was the youngest of seven children, five of whom died in infancy and his elder sister was Maria Anna Mozart, nicknamed Nannerl. Mozart was baptized the day after his birth, at St. Ruperts Cathedral in Salzburg, the baptismal record gives his name in Latinized form, as Joannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart. He generally called himself Wolfgang Amadè Mozart as an adult, Leopold Mozart, a native of Augsburg, was a minor composer and an experienced teacher. In 1743, he was appointed as fourth violinist in the establishment of Count Leopold Anton von Firmian. Four years later, he married Anna Maria in Salzburg, Leopold became the orchestras deputy Kapellmeister in 1763. During the year of his sons birth, Leopold published a textbook, Versuch einer gründlichen Violinschule.
When Nannerl was 7, she began lessons with her father. Years later, after her brothers death, she reminisced, He often spent much time at the clavier, picking out thirds, which he was ever striking, and his pleasure showed that it sounded good. In the fourth year of his age his father, for a game as it were, began to teach him a few minuets and he could play it faultlessly and with the greatest delicacy, and keeping exactly in time. At the age of five, he was composing little pieces
In music, the organ is a keyboard instrument of one or more pipe divisions, each played with its own keyboard, played either with the hands on a keyboard or with the feet using pedals. The organ is an old musical instrument, dating from the time of Ctesibius of Alexandria. It was played throughout the Ancient Greek and Ancient Roman world, subsequently it re-emerged as a secular and recital instrument in the Classical music tradition. Pipe organs use air moving through pipes to produce sounds, since the 16th century, pipe organs have used various materials for pipes, which can vary widely in timbre and volume. The pipes are divided into ranks and controlled by the use of hand stops, although the keyboard is not expressive as on a piano and does not affect dynamics, some divisions may be enclosed in a swell box, allowing the dynamics to be controlled by shutters. Some organs are enclosed, meaning that all the divisions can be controlled by one set of shutters. Some special registers with free reed pipes are expressive and these instruments vary greatly in size, ranging from a cubic yard to a height reaching five floors, and are built in churches, concert halls, and homes.
Small organs are called positive or portative, increasingly hybrid organs are appearing in which pipes are augmented with electronic additions. Great economies of space and cost are possible especially when the lowest of the pipes can be replaced, non-piped organs include the reed organ or harmonium, which like the accordion and harmonica use air to excite free reeds. Electronic organs or digital organs, notably the Hammond organ, generate electronically produced sound through one or more loudspeakers, mechanical organs include the barrel organ, water organ, and Orchestrion. These are controlled by means such as pinned barrels or book music. Little barrel organs dispense with the hands of an organist and bigger organs are powered in most cases by a grinder or today by other means such as an electric motor. The pipe organ is the grandest musical instrument in size and scope, along with the clock, it was considered one of the most complex human-made mechanical creations before the Industrial Revolution.
Pipe organs range in size from a short keyboard to huge instruments with over 10,000 pipes. A large modern organ typically has three or four keyboards with five each, and a two-and-a-half octave pedal board. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart called the organ the King of instruments, some of the biggest instruments have 64-foot pipes, and it sounds to an 8 Hz frequency fundamental tone. For instance, the Wanamaker organ, located in Philadelphia, USA, has sonic resources comparable with three simultaneous symphony orchestras, most organs in Europe, the Americas, and Australasia can be found in Christian churches. The introduction of organs is traditionally attributed to Pope Vitalian in the 7th century
Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy and widely known as Felix Mendelssohn, was a German composer, pianist and conductor of the early Romantic period. A grandson of the philosopher Moses Mendelssohn, Felix Mendelssohn was born into a prominent Jewish family and he was brought up without religion until the age of seven, when he was baptised as a Reformed Christian. Mendelssohn was recognised early as a prodigy, but his parents were cautious. Mendelssohn enjoyed early success in Germany, where he revived interest in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. The Leipzig Conservatoire, which he founded, became a bastion of this anti-radical outlook, Mendelssohn wrote symphonies, oratorios, piano music and chamber music. His Songs Without Words are his most famous solo piano compositions and he is now among the most popular composers of the Romantic era. Mendelssohns father was the banker Abraham Mendelssohn, the son of the German Jewish philosopher Moses Mendelssohn and his mother was Lea Salomon, a member of the Itzig family and a sister of Jakob Salomon Bartholdy.
Mendelssohn was the second of four children, his older sister Fanny displayed exceptional, the family moved to Berlin in 1811, leaving Hamburg in disguise fearing French revenge for the Mendelssohn banks role in breaking Napoleons Continental System blockade. Abraham and Lea Mendelssohn sought to give their children – Fanny, Paul, Fanny became a well-known pianist and amateur composer, originally Abraham had thought that she, rather than Felix, would be the more musical. However, at time, it was not considered proper, by either Abraham or Felix, for a woman to have a career in music, so Fanny remained an active. Abraham was disinclined to allow Felix to follow a career until it became clear that he seriously intended to dedicate himself to it. Mendelssohn grew up in an intellectual environment, Sarah Rothenburg wrote of the household that Europe came to their living room. Abraham Mendelssohn renounced the Jewish religion, he and his wife decided not to have Felix circumcised. Felix and his siblings were first brought up without religious education and his wife Lea were themselves baptised in 1822, formally adopting the surname Mendelssohn Bartholdy for themselves and their children.
The name Bartholdy was added at the suggestion of Leas brother, Jakob Salomon Bartholdy, in 1829, his sister Fanny wrote to him of Bartholdy this name that we all dislike. Like Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart before him, Mendelssohn was regarded as a child prodigy and he began taking piano lessons from his mother when he was six, and at seven was tutored by Marie Bigot in Paris. After the family moved to Berlin, all four Mendelssohn children studied piano with Ludwig Berger, from at least May 1819 Felix studied counterpoint and composition with Carl Friedrich Zelter in Berlin. This was an important influence on his future career, Zelter had almost certainly been recommended as a teacher by his aunt Sarah Levy, who had been a pupil of W. F. Bach and a patron of C. P. E. Bach
Tord Gustavsen is a jazz pianist and composer. He tours extensively worldwide, and he has been a bandleader for a trio and quartet at various times, Gustavsen was born on 5 October 1970 in Oslo and raised in rural Hurdal, Akershus. He grew up playing church music, Gustavsen holds a bachelors degree in psychology at the University of Oslo, before he attended the Trondheim Musikkonsevatorium for a three years study of jazz. Thereafter he became a graduate of musicology at the University of Oslo, between 2003 and 2007 The Tord Gustavsen Trio released three albums on ECM Records. The trio was made up of Gustavsen on piano, Harald Johnsen on double bass, the albums contained rapt, meditative music, which resonated with the inner needs of a large, discriminating audience, combined sales exceeded 100,000. The trio won the Nattjazz prize in 2005 and he followed these releases with an ensemble formed during Vossajazz in 2008. It was composed of Gustavsen, Tore Brunborg, Mats Eilertsen, with vocalist Kristin Asbjørnsen added for some tracks, the album Restored, Returned was recorded in 2009.
The album was awarded with Spellemannsprisen, the quartets follow-up, The Well, was released in 2012. That year, Gustavsen played over four days at the Montreal Jazz Festival, with the quartet, as a solo pianist, the quartet album Extended Circle two years reveals a new edginess and dynamic impact that the quartet brings to Gustavsens music. In addition, he has recorded as a musician. He took part in Nymark Collective established by Kåre Nymark, since 2014 Gustavsen has collaborated with the German-Afgan jazz singer Simin Tander, releasing the album What Was Said. They performed at the 2016 Vinterjazz and the 2016 Vossajazz in Norway