Composer Information: Alexander Goedicke

The Composer Alexander Fyodorovich Goedike (1877-1957) grew up in a musicians' family of German origin. His grandfather Karl (dates unknown) was an organist and singing teacher. His father, Friedrich Alexander Paul (Fyodor Karlovich, 1839?) was an organist and pianist in the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow. Another Karl, perhaps a brother of his father's, is said to have been a trumpeter in the Bolshoi Theater Orchestra. He is said to have performed Tchaikovsky's "Neapolitan Dance" in 1876 in public, one year before the world premiere of the ballet Swan Lake in which this famous cornet solo is to be found. However this may be, Alexander Fyodorovich Goedike studied the piano at the Moscow Conservatory and in 1900, in Vienna, won the Rubinstein Composition Prize for his Concert Piece for piano, Op. 2/2 (1896). In 1909 he became professor of piano at the Moscow Conservatory, and in 1919 for organ and chamber music.

His training as a composer, on the other hand, was informal; Tanayev advised him. As a highly respected organist and teacher, Goedike represented the classical direction, oriented on the German model, and influenced an entire generation of organists in the Soviet Union. Besides numerous organ works, Goedike composed four operas, three symphonies, various overtures, vocal works, and chamber music. In addition, he wrote one concerto each for piano (Op. 11, 1900), organ (Op. 35, 1927), horn (Op. 40, 1929), trumpet (Op. 41, 1930), and violin (Op. 91, 1951).

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