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On This Day
9 December: Alexandre Tharaud Was Born
Alexandre Tharaud considers the piano “an extension of his voice, of his body, of his heart.” At the same time, he likens the musical score with all the composer’s annotations “to a straitjacket that restrains us, and we are also
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On This Day
8 December: James Galway Was Born
James Galway, who eventually became known as the “Man with the Golden Flute,” basically grew up with a flute in his crib. His grandfather James Galway was a highly regarded flute player in Belfast. He taught his son, another James
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On This Day
7 December: Pietro Mascagni Was Born
Pietro Mascagni, who single-handedly established the prototype of verismo opera with his 1890 masterpiece Cavalleria Rusticana, was born on 7 December 1863. His father was a baker, and he was determined that Pietro should follow in his footsteps. Pietro’s precocious
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6 December: Nikolaus Harnoncourt Was Born
Specifically known for his historically informed performances of music from the Classical era, Nikolaus Harnoncourt was born in Berlin on 6 December 1929. His full name actually reads Johann Nikolaus Graf de la Fontaine and d’Harnoncourt-Unverzagt, a lineage passed on
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4 December: Benjamin Britten Died
Benjamin Britten was admitted to the National Heart Hospital on 2 May 1973. Under the care of the cardiologist Graham Hayward, Britten’s medical history noted a heart murmur in infancy and an episode of pneumonia. Aortic regurgitation was detected in
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On This Day
2 December: Aaron Copland Died
By the early 1970s, Aaron Copland stopped composing. As he wrote, “It was exactly as if someone had simply turned off a faucet.” He felt lucky to have been given so long to be creative, and was resigned to the
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1 December: Rudolf Buchbinder Was Born
Rudolf Buchbinder has been described as “the greatest natural pianist talent,” a performer “whose interpretations flow from a unique fusion of spiritual insight and intellectual rigour.” In fact, the critic Joachim Kaiser praised Buchbinder’s “innate ability to reveal fresh ideas
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30 November: Radu Lupu Was Born
There is nothing more irritating to reporters and music aficionados than a superstar who makes himself unavailable. For well over 30 years, Radu Lupu basically refused to talk to the press. As such he was termed a “woolly recluse,” referring
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