Obscure Music Mondays

  1. Obscure Music Monday: Bax's On a May Evening

    Sir Arnold Edward Trevor Bax (Nov. 8, 1883 - Oct. 3, 1953) was an English composer, poet, and author. Predominately known for his symphonic work, he also wrote choral music, concertos, chamber pieces, and works for piano. Continue reading →
  2. Obscure Music Monday: Palmgren's Moonlight

    Selim Gustav Adolf Palmgren (Feb. 16, 1878 - Dec. 13, 1951) was a Finnish composer, conductor, and pianist. He studied at the Helsinki Conservatory in Helsinki from 1895 to 1899, then continued his piano studies in Berlin. He conducted several orchestras and music societies in Finland, and had successful performances as a pianist in Finland and Scandanavia. In 1921 he moved to the United...
  3. Obscure Music Monday: Smyth's The Wreckers Overture

    Dame Ethel Mary Smyth DBE (April 22,1858 - May 8, 1944) was an English composer and member of the women's suffrage movement. The fourth of eight children, Smyth showed a keen interested in music as a career. Her father, a major general in the Royal Artillery, was not particularly supportive, though that didn't stop her from pursuing music anyway. Smyth studied...
  4. Obscure Music Monday: Dukas' Sonnet de Ronsard

    Paul Abraham Dukas (Oct. 1, 1865 - May 17, 1935)  was a French composer, professor, and critic, born in to a Jewish family. The second of three children, Dukas didn't show any extraordinary musical talent, despite taking piano from a young age, until his teenage years, when he started to compose while recovering from an illness. When he was 16...
  5. Obscure Music Monday: Bridge's Gondoliera

    Frank Bridge (Feb. 26, 1879 - Jan. 10, 1941) was an English composer, violist and conductor. Born in Brighton, he attended the Royal College of Music in London from 1899 to 1903, and was active as a violist in several string quartets. He also did a bit of conducting for awhile before devoting himself to composition, with one of his most...
  6. Obscure Music Monday: Boulanger's Prelude in D-flat Major

    Marie-Juliette Olga "Lili" Boulanger (Aug. 21, 1893 - March 15, 1918) was a French composer, and  the younger sister of the famed composition teacher/composer Nadia Boulanger. Born in Paris, Lili Boulanger was a child prodigy; at the age of two, it was discovered that she had perfect pitch. Her parents, both musicians, encouraged her musical education, and she would accompany her sister...
  7. Obscure Music Monday: Gilson's Berceuse

    Paul Gilson (June 15, 1865 - April 3,1942) was born in Brussels, and was an organist and choir director. At the Brussels Conservatory he studied harmony and counterpoint, and won a Prix de Rome for a cantata he wrote. He became a Professor of Composition there in 1899, but quit in 1909 after he became an inspector for music education until 1930. He wrote a great deal, but his output slowed down significantly after 1905; at that point he mainly wrote about music theory, criticism, and composition. Continue reading →
  8. Obscure Music Monday: Langgaard's Blumenvignetten

    Rued Langgaard (July 28, 1893 - July 10, 1952) was a Danish composer and organist, born to musical parents. He began piano lessons at five years old, with his parents as his first teachers, and was playing Chopin Mazurkas at age seven. He started composing not long after for the piano, and began taking organ and violin lessons.Langgaard started studying music theory when he was twelve years old, and a year later, he was learning counterpoint from Carl Nielsen. His debut as a composer came a month later and he continued composing in his teen years. In addition to composing, he played organ in a few towns. Continue reading →
  9. Obscure Music Monday: Munktell's Bränningar

    Helena Mathilda Munktell (Nov. 24, 1852 - Sept. 10, 1919) was a Swedish composer, pianist and vocalist. She studied at the Stockholm Conservatory with Joseph Dente, Johan Lindegren, Conrad Nordqvist, and Ludwig Norman, and then moved to Paris to study composition with Vincent d'Indy and Benjamin Godard. Her compositional debut in 1885 was a success; critics were impressed with her...
  10. Obscure Music Monday: Beach's Ballade

    Amy Marcy Cheney Beach (Sept. 5, 1867 - December 27, 1944) was an American composer and pianist.  Extremely gifted from a young age, Beach's talents seemed to run in the family, with various members playing instruments or singing, and showing great aptitude for music. Continue reading →

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