February 18

1632 Giovanni Battista Vitali – Italian composer and violone player (d.1692); his Artificii musicali  Op 13 (1689) is one of the most comprehensive studies of counterpoint before Bach’s The Art of Fugue and Musical Offering.

1869 first complete performance of Johannes Brahms's Ein deutsches Requiem (A German Requiem) in Leipzig with Carl Reinecke conducting the Gewandhaus Orchestra and Chorus; the composer’s longest composition is sacred but non-liturgical.             

1919 first performance of Deems Taylor’s chamber suite Through the Looking Glass by the New York Chamber Music Society; inspired by Lewis Carroll’s story of the same title, the sequel to Alice in Wonderland.

1939 Marek Janowski – Polish-born German conductor (78 years old); holds the Otto Klemperer Guest Conductor Chair with the Pittsburgh Symphony.

1947 premiere of Gian-Carlo Menotti’s one-act comedy The Telephone in New York City at the Heckscher Theater, now known as Teatro Heckscher.

1952 first performance of Prokofiev’s Sinfonia Concertante Op 125 (as ‘Cello Concerto No. 2’), in Moscow, with Sviatoslav Richter conducting and soloist Mstislav Rostropovich.

1965 first performance of Alberto Ginastera’s Harp Concerto, by harpist Nicanor Zabaleta, with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy conducting.