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
TODAY IS
July 11
Did You Guess? The Boston Pops Orchestra's annual Fourth of July Concert usually ends with fireworks!  Held on the Esplanade, it is one of the best-attended Independence Day celebrations in the country with regular estimated attendance of 200,000500,000 people.
Can You Guess?
I Arthur Fiedler was the conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra for 50 years.  He began a tradition of performing a free public concert on a particular holiday every year.  This concert usually goes over with a big bang.  Can You Guess what holiday Fiedler and the Pops were celebrating?
Look at the Bottom of the Page for the Answer.
What Else
Happened
Today?
George Gershwin died July 11, 1937.

He 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.

1801 - John Hill Hewitt, US composer, was born in Maiden Lane, NY.

1885 - The First concert of the Boston Promenade Orchestra which later became the Boston Pops. Performed at the old Boston Music Hall under Adolf Neuendorff.

1889 -
Johanna Magdalena Beyer, US composer, was born.

1940 - First conducting appearance by
Leonard Bernstein. He led the Boston Pops in a performance of Wagner's Prelude to Act I of Die Meistersinger at an open-air Esplanade Concert at the shell on the Charles river.

1998 -
Amazon.com expanded its product line from books only to compact discs as well.

1976 - Wild Cherry's single
Play That Funky Music was released.
In 1912 he began studyies with Charles Hambitzer, who introduced him to the music of Debussy and Ravel,  Schoenberg 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 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.

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 for spectacular singing and dancing,

George Gershwin
1898-1937
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Gershwin's Music at Amazon
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