Louis Moreau Gottschalk

Louis Moreau Gottschalk (born May 8, 1829 in New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.A.–died December 18,1869 in Rio de Janeiro Brazil), was the first American pianist to receive international recognition and the first American composer who used Latin American and Creole folk rhythms and themes. Gottschalk was born to an English-German father, and a French mother. He was a child prodigy on many instruments and by his teen years was regarded as an authentic spokesperson for the New World. Gottschalk first made his New York City debut in 1853 after he had played in many concerts in Europe. He traveled the United States, West Indies, and spent many years in Cuba and other Caribbean areas. He began a South American tour in 1865. Unfortunately, he was killed while performing at a festival of one of his works. Grande Tarantelle, for piano and orchestra, Bamboula and other piano pieces by him combine Latin American and Creole dance idioms with European piano virtuoso styles. Many of his vocal compositions are typical of the early 19th century sentimental salon music. He was, like Frederic Chopin and a composer in the Romantic tradition. However, Gottschalk did not have the same harmonic creativity as Chopin and preferred to conform to popular taste. His music was revived in the middle of the 20th century. Notes of a pianist (1881), his posthumously published book contains stories and articles about his travels. From www.britannica.com

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