Rare Music presents R. Larry Todd & Penelope Jensen, discussing and performing the music of Fanny Hensel
Friday, 19 March, 4pm, Perkins Library, Biddle Rare Book Room
Fanny Hensel (1805-1847)—child prodigy, virtuoso pianist, and prolific composer of well over four hundred works—was an extraordinary musician and astute observer of European culture. Granddaughter of the Enlightenment philosopher Moses Mendelssohn and sister of the legendary composer Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, she has, in recent decades, finally secured her place as the leading European woman composer of the nineteenth century. She excelled in exquisite songs of epigrammatic intensity and short, lyrical piano pieces, but the expressive range of her art also
accommodated virtuoso piano and chamber works, orchestral music, and cantatas that paid homage to J. S. Bach.
R. Larry Todd, author of the award-winning Mendelssohn: A Life in Music, will discuss and sign copies of his newly released biography, Fanny Hensel: The Other Mendelssohn. He will be joined by soprano Penelope Jensen to perform some of Hensel’s songs, which her brother recognized as among the finest examples of the genre.
Rare Music is co-sponsored by the Duke University Musical Instrument Collections (DUMIC) and the Duke University Libraries with additional support from the Vice Provost for the Arts, the Carrabina Endowment, Friends of DUMIC, High Strung Violins & Guitars, and VoChor Incorporated.
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