Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Mr. Gottschalk, New Orleans and Dom Pedro ll

Louis Moreau Gottschalk led the most interesting of lives. He was born in New Orleans to an English Jewish father and a Dominican Creole mother. Educated in classical music, yet with an ear for the African rythyms which permeated New Orleans, Gottschalk composed pieces which were perhaps beyond the reach of those solely trained classically . His "Bamboula" was a hit and derived much from his observations of the music of slaves and timing behind their dances. He was sent to France to further his studies but was at first shunned by the Paris Conservatoire for being, well, too American. After winning the French over he returned to America.
Gottschalk´s curiosity took him to Central America and finally to South America where he established residency and ended up composing the "Marcha Solene Brasileira" which is the hymn of the Brazilian Army. He was also summoned by Dom Pedro ll to create a piece honoring the Brazilian National Anthem. The result was brilliant.
Unfortunetaly Gottschalk died on stage, in Rio de Janeiro, at the age of 40.

Below the "Bamboula".

Here is his "play" on the "Hino Nacional Brasileiro" ( the Brazilian National Anthem).

Let´s wrap it up with his "Escenas Campestres Cubanas"

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