Today in Music History
A Daily Look at Music History For Violin Students
A Look at What Happened on Today's Date
Long, Long Ago . . . Or Maybe Just Last Year
December 3
Can You Guess?
In the original Broadway cast of Lerner and Lowe's musical Camelot, the actress who played Queen Guenevere later starred in a movie as a nanny with a talking umbrella. Can You Guess the name of the actress, the nanny or both?
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1724 - Premiere of Bach's Sacred Cantata No. 62 ("Nun komm der Heiden Heiland" I) performed on the 1st Sunday in Advent as part of Bach's second annual Sacred Cantata cycle in Leipzig (1724/25).

1883 - Anton Webern, Austrian composer,  was born in Vienna.

1908 - Premiere of Elgar's Symphony No. 1.  Hans Richter conducted the Hallé Orchestra.

1943 - Premiere of Hanson's Symphony No. 4 ("Requiem"), with the Boston Symphony conducted by the composer. This work was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1944.

1953 - Premiere of Shostakovich: String Quartet No. 4, in Moscow, by the Beethoven Quartet.

1960 - Lerner and Lowe's  musical Camelot opened on Broadway.

1963 - Premiere of Aaron Copland's ballet Dance Panels, in Munich.

1966 - The first Monkees concert was held, in Honolulu, HI.
December 3, 1925 a new  Piano Concerto by George Gershwin premiered.  Walter Damrosch conducted the New York Symphony at Carnegie Hall.  The critics did not receive the piece well, but the audience cheered their approval when the piece ended.  They felt that Gershwin was one of the few composers actually addressing the musical tastes of the common person of the day . . . jazz.
George Gershwin was born Jacob Gershovitz, September 26, 1898, the second of four children. His parents had immigrated to New York from Russia. George discovered music at age 6 listening to  Rubinstein's Melodie in F and was overwhelmed at nine hearing a friend playing the violin.  , appropriated the piano his mother purchased when he was twelve and he, too, was given piano lessons.

In 1912 he began studies with Charles Hambitzer, who introduced him to the music of Debussy, Schoenberg, Ravel and the classical piano literature. Gershwin admired Irving Berlin, Liszt and the great pianists then playing in New York, artists such as Josef Lhevinne, Josef Hoffmann, and composer-pianist Ferrucio Busoni.
George Gershwin
1898 - 1937
Gershwin at Amazon
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High School Musical (Violin) - sheet music at
High School Musical (Violin) (for Violin Instrumental Play-Along Pack) Book & CD Package for violin. Series: Hal Leonard Instrumental Folio. 24 pages. Published by Hal Leonard. (HL.842128)
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A Fiddling Christmas - sheet music at
A Fiddling Christmas Written by Craig Duncan. Violin solo book for fiddle and piano accompaniment. With solo part, standard notation, bowings, chord names and piano accompaniment. 106 pages. Published by Mel Bay Publications, Inc. (MB.96466)
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Julie Andrews converses with her umbrella in the movie Mary Poppins!
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Gershwin's first Broadway show, La, La, Lucille, ran for one hundred performances in 1919, the same year that Al Jolson heard Swanee (written in 1917) and added it to his touring show. Swanee was a tremendous hit which sold over two million records its first year, and George was well on his way to fame and fortune. For the next five years he wrote the music for George White's Scandals, and in the 1922 Scandals he included a one-act opera called Blue Monday. This opera lasted only a single performance, but it was the first serious music

Joined by his brother Ira, George wrote successful musicals during the 1920s for performers such as Fred and Adele Astaire, Gertrude Lawrence, W.C. Fields, Jeanette MacDonald, Ruby Keeler, Jimmy Durante, Fannie Brice and Bob Hope. Most of these musicals were characterized by crazy plots but featured spectacular singing and dancing,
George left school at fifteen to join music publisher Jerome K. Remick as Tin Pan Alley's youngest-ever song-plugger for $15.00 a week, all the while trying his hand at composition. His first published song (in 1916) was When You Want 'Em You Can't Get 'Em, which did not catch on, but that same year Sigmund Romberg used another Gershwin song in a show.