Johan Wagenaar


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(b Utrecht, 1 Nov. 1862; d The Hague, 17 June 1941). Dutch composer and teacher. After studying in Utrecht and Berlin he became a teacher at the Utrecht Music School and in 1887 was appointed its director. From 1919 to 1937 he was director of the conservatory in The Hague. His best-known work is probably the overture Cyrano de Bergerac (1905), but he also wrote operas, cantatas, and the symphonic poem Saul en David (1906). His son Bernard Wagenaar (b Arnhem, 18 July 1894; d York, ME, 19 May 1971) studied with his father and at Utrecht University, and became a conductor and music teacher. In 1920 he emigrated to the USA, becoming an American citizen in 1927 and teaching composition at the Juilliard School (1925–68). His works include four symphonies, vocal music, and a chamber opera. His Song of Mourning (1944) was commissioned by the Netherlands American Foundation to commemorate Dutch war victims.

From The Oxford Companion to Music in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Music.

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