M.C. 2015-16 Clues
Mystery Composer Contest Clues
This Year's M.C. was a composer, innovator, conductor, and pianist. He was a tidy, logical man with a formidable intellect who insisted on precision in whichever language he was using--Russian, French, German, or English. He always kept on his desk a pile of well-thumbed dictionaries in several languages with which to check shades of difference in meaning.
The miracle of this year's M.C.'s career is that he survived with unimpaired creativity all the blows life dealt him--losing his homeland and his property there during a revolution in 1917; becoming a citizen of a new country then losing that homeland during the Second World War; immigrating and eventually becoming a citizen of yet a third country; losing many people he cared for, including his first wife and a daughter; and a number of major illnesses, including typhoid and tuberculosis. When at the age of eighty-seven he was hospitalized during a severe illness, a nurse asked him if he wanted anything. "I want to compose," he said bitterly, resenting any interruption of his work.
In their homeland, M.C.'s father was a well-known opera singer. However, M.C.'s father did not want his son to pursue a career in music. While a child (and due to his father's career), M.C. attended performances of the opera and ballet and learned to play the piano. But, as a university student M.C. was told by his father to study law. M.C. described his teen age years as "a series of irksome duties and the perpetual frustration of all my desires and expectations." When his father died in 1902, M.C. was freed from the study of law and became a pupil in composition until 1908.
"My music is best understood by children and animals." --- M.C. ----
"The trouble with music appreciation in general is that people are taught to have too much respect for music; they should be taught to love it instead." --- M.C. ----