Eugene Ysaye - Encyclopedia

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EUGENE YSAYE (1858-), Belgian violinist, was born at Liege, where he studied with his father and under R. Massart, at the Conservatoire, until he was fifteen; he had some lessons from Wieniawski, and later from Vieuxtemps. In 1879 Ysaye played in Germany, and next year acted as leader of Bilse's orchestra in Berlin; he appeared in Paris in 1883, and for the first time in London at a Philharmonic concert in 1889. He was violin professor at the Brussels Conservatoire from 1886 to 1898, and instituted the celebrated orchestral concerts of which he was manager and conductor. Ysaye first appeared as conductor before a London audience in 1900, and in 1907 conducted Fidelio at Covent Garden. The sonata concerts in which he played with Raoul Pugno (b. 1852), the French pianist, became very popular in Paris and Brussels, and were notable features of several London concert seasons. As a violinist he ranks with the finest masters of the instrument, with extraordinary temperamental power as an interpreter. His compositions include a Programme Symphony (played in London, 1905), a Piano Concerto, and a "Suite Wallonne."

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