BANNER Mendelssohn copy

About Felix Mendelssohn


Felix Mendelssohn (1809–1847) was a German born composer, pianist, organist and conductor of the early Romantic period.  As a child he was recognised as a musical prodigy, but unlike composer such as Mozart, his parents chose not to capitalise on his talent.  

Mendelssohn wrote symphonies, concerti, oratorios, piano music and chamber music. His best-known works include his Overture and incidental music for A Midsummer Night's Dream, the Italian Symphony, the Scottish Symphony, the overture The Hebrides, his Violin Concerto, and his String Octet. 

He saw early success in Germany, where he also helped revive interest in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. Mendelssohn was particularly well received in Britain. He made his first trip to Brtain in 1829.   In the summer he visited Edinburgh, where he met among others the composer John Thomson, whom he later recommended to be Professor of Music at Edinburgh University.  

On his eighth visit in the summer of 1844, he conducted five of the Philharmonic concerts in London, and subsequently met Queen Victoria and her musical husband Prince Albert, who both greatly admired his music.In the course of ten visits to Britain during his life, totalling about 20 months, Mendelssohn won a strong following, and made a deep impression on British musical life.

On his last visit to Britain in 1847, Mendelssohn was the soloist in Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 4 and conducted his own Scottish Symphony with the Philharmonic Orchestra before the Queen and Prince Albert.

Further Reading: 
Official Website
BBC Website
Groves Educational Resources
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