Music & Culture

Classical Music Posts

Women’s History Music Moment: Toby Saks

The chamber music impresaria Toby Saks became a legend in the music life of the Pacific Northwest. She began her career in New York: she earned awards as a teenage cellist; she played in the New York Philharmonic in her 20s. She moved out west to join the faculty of the University of Washington School of Music, and soon gathered a group of classical music supporters to launch the Seattle Chamber Music Festival. Continue Reading Women’s History Music Moment: Toby Saks

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Women’s History Music Moment: Helen, Countess of Radnor

Helen, Countess of Rador seemed to care very little for what society said she could or couldn’t do as a Victorian Lady – so she decided to make history.  

Born in a tiny town in Central England, a young Helen moved to London, moved to London, married an Earl, and started her [new] life as a countess and patron of the arts.  Continue Reading Women’s History Music Moment: Helen, Countess of Radnor

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Women’s History Music Moment: Mary Terey-Smith

The conductor Mary Terey-Smith made music history here in the Pacific Northwest, as a result of a political revolution half a world away. This Hungarian-born music talent, student of Kodaly at the legendary Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest, hadn’t been out in the working world very long when the 1956 Hungarian Revolution turned her into a refugee. Continue Reading Women’s History Music Moment: Mary Terey-Smith

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Women’s History Music Moment: Bach’s Daughters

You’ve heard so much about the sons of Johann Sebastian Bach, but there were daughters, too.

Bach was 23, and his wife Maria Barbara was 24, when the first of their children was born. They named her Catherina Dorothea. CD grew into a singer, and helped out in her father’s music work. Fifteen years passed, her mother died, her father remarried, and finally, CD Bach acquired a sister: Cristina Sophia Henrietta, daughter of Johann Sebastian and Anna Magdalena Bach. CSH died at the age of three, just as another sister, Elizabeth Juliana Frederica, was born. EJF Bach would grow up to marry one of her father’s students. Continue Reading Women’s History Music Moment: Bach’s Daughters

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Women’s History Music Moment: Barbara Strozzi

Barbara Strozzi changed the face of vocal music with her stunning and emotional song collections. 

Born to a famous poet and librettist, she was encouraged to follow her artistic talents from an early age and received a musical education from other famous Italian composers. 

Strozzi wasn’t afraid to experiment. She made a big name herself in the 17th century, writing songs for sopranos and mezzos, and collections of non religious music; songs and texts that have lived for 400 years. Continue Reading Women’s History Music Moment: Barbara Strozzi

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