February 9

1740 death of Vincent Lübeck – German composer, organist and teacher (age c. 85); enjoyed a remarkably high reputation in his lifetime, but despite this and his long life, very few compositions by him survive.

1885 Alban Berg – Austrian composer (d. 1935); member of the Second Viennese School with Arnold Schoenberg and Anton Webern, and produced compositions that combined the Romanticism of Mahler with a personal adaptation of Schoenberg's twelve-tone technique.

1893 premiere of Giuseppe Verdi's Falstaff at La Scala in Milan; libretto adapted by Arrigo Boito from Shakespeare's The Merry Wives of Windsor and scenes from Henry IV, parts 1 and 2; the last of Verdi’s 28 operas, written as he was approaching the age of 80.

1909 first performance of the last of the four ‘books’ of the Albéniz piano suite Iberia by French pianist Blanche Selva in Paris at the Société Nationale de Musique.

1941 first performance of Morton Gould’s Spirituals for Orchestra in New York City conducted by the composer; established his reputation as a concert composer.

1949 Paul Hillier – English conductor, music director and baritone (69 years old); specializes in early music and contemporary art music, especially that by composers Steve Reich and Arvo Pärt.

1966 Amanda Roocroft – English soprano (52 years old); in 2009, English music blogger Norman Lebrecht called her “the last British soprano on the world stage”.

 

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