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In a world without recorded music, talent with an instrument was a valuable gift. But even more admired were the people who actually composed the music others would play; those so endowed could aspire to attain unending renown...and if not, at least a lucrative career.
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George de La Hele

aka: La Hèle
borndied
15471586
a Franco-Flemish composer of the Renaissance, mainly active in the Habsburg chapels of Spain and the Low Countries. Among his surviving music is a book of eight masses, some for as many as eight voices. While he was a prolific composer during his time in Spain, much of his music was destroyed in 1734 in the burning of the chapel library in Madrid.
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Pierre de La Rue

aka: Piersson, Pierchon
borndied
1452 ca1518
a Franco-Flemish composer and singer of the Renaissance. La Rue wrote masses, motets, Magnificats, settings of the Lamentations, and chansons, a diverse range of compositions reflective of his status as the primary composer at one of Europe's most renowned musical institutions, surrounded by other similarly creative people. Some scholars have suggested that ...
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Ludwig Wenzel Lachnith

borndied
17461820
a Bohemian horn player and versatile composer influenced by Joseph Haydn and Ignaz Pleyel. He is remembered chiefly as a composer of pasticcios, using the music of several composers in one piece. Today he is chiefly remembered because of his adaptions of operas by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
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Ignaz Anton Ladurner

borndied
17661839
an Austrian pianist, composer and pedagogue. He became a professor at the Conservatoire de Paris in May 1797 until his ouster in 1802, during a reorganization of the teaching team. He mainly composed sonatas for piano two and four hands.


Jose Angel Lamas

aka: José Ángel
borndied
1775, Aug 21814, Dec 10
a Venezuelan classical musician and composer born in Caracas. He was the main representative of the classical period in Venezuela. Author of the immortal sacred piece, Popule Meus, his most important and best known piece. It was composed in 1801, and premiered in Caracas Cathedral during the colonial-provincial period. Lamas, away from politics and the whirl...
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Walter Lambe

borndied
1450 ca1504 ca
an English composer. His works are well represented in the Eton Choirbook. Lambe's music shows an imagination and technical mastery exceeded by few others. His achievement is very diverse; for example, he wrote the longest antiphon in the Eton choirbook, O Maria plena gratia, and one of the shortest, Nesciens mater. More important, his antiphon...
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Cross-listed in Performers

Charles Lucien Lambert

borndied
18281896
a black American pianist, music teacher and composer, born a free person of color in New Orleans before the American Civil War. He and his family were noted for talent in music and gained international acclaim. Because of racism in the US, Lambert moved to France with his family in 1854, where he worked as a composer and musician.
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Michel Lambert

borndied
16101696
a French singing master, theorbist and composer. Lambert's role as a singing master and composer of dramatic airs contributed to the creation of the French opera. As a singing master, he enjoyed a reputation attested by many testimonies of his time. Beginning in 1656, his reputation as a composer was established and his compositions were regularly published.
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John Frederick Lampe

borndied
17031751
a German musician. He was born in Saxony, but came to England in 1724 and played the bassoon in opera houses. His wife, Isabella Lampe, was sister-in-law to the composer Thomas Arne with whom Lampe collaborated on a number of concert seasons. Lampe wrote operatic works in English in defiance of the vogue for Italian opera popularised by George Frideric Hande...
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Honore Langle

aka: Honoré Langlé
borndied
17411807
a French theorist of music of Monagesque origin, author of a Traité d'harmonie et de modulation (Paris: Boyer, 1795). Napoleon named him to the newly founded Paris Conservatoire. In Paris he supported himself by giving harpsichord and singing lessons and taught musical composition to private pupils, while he gained a reputation through participating in Anne...
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Nicholas Lanier

borndied
1588, Sep1666, Feb 24
an English composer and musician; the first to hold the title of Master of the King's Music from 1625 to 1666, an honour given to musicians of great distinction. He was the court musician, a composer and performer and Groom of the Chamber in the service of King Charles I and Charles II. He was also a singer, lutenist, scenographer and painter.
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Joseph Franz Karl Lanner

borndied
1801, Apr 121843, Apr 14
an Austrian dance music composer. He is best remembered as one of the earliest Viennese composers to reform the waltz from a simple peasant dance to something that even the highest society could enjoy, either as an accompaniment to the dance, or for the music's own sake. He was just as famous as his friend and musical rival Johann Strauss I, who was better k...
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Guillaume Lasceux

borndied
17401831


Eduard Lassen

borndied
1830, Apr 131904, Jan 15
a Belgian-Danish composer and conductor. Although of Danish birth, he spent most of his career working as the music director at the court in Weimar. A moderately prolific composer, Lassen produced music in a variety of genres including operas, symphonic works, piano works, lieder, and choral works among others. His most successful pieces were his fine vocal ...
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Orlande de Lassus

aka: Roland de Lassus, Orlande de Lassus, Orlando di Lasso, Orlandus Lassus, Roland de Lattre
borndied
1532 ca1594, Jun 14
a Netherlandish or Franco-Flemish composer of the late Renaissance. He is today considered to be the chief representative of the mature polyphonic style of the Franco-Flemish school, and one of the three most famous and influential musicians in Europe at the end of the 16th century (the other two being Palestrina and Victoria).
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Gaetano Latilla

borndied
1711, Jan 121788, Jan 15
an Italian opera composer, the most important of the period immediately preceding Niccolò Piccinni (his nephew). Latilla was born in Bari, and studied at the Loreto Conservatory in Naples. He began writing comic operas for the Teatro dei Fiorentini in Naples in 1732, and is best known for his settings of Gismondo (Rome, 1737) and Madama Ciana (Rome, 1738)....
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Wolff Jakob Lauffensteiner

borndied
1676, Apr1754, Mar 26
an eminent Austrian lutenist active in the Bavarian court where he spent much of his career in service to the Elector of Bavaria in Munich. Lauffensteiner's extant works for both solo lute and chamber ensembles typically take the forms of suite or partita. His music is generally highly idiomatic for the lute, in the German style (i.e. uniting traditional Fre...
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Franz Lauska

borndied
1764, Jan 131825, Apr 18
a Moravian pianist, composer, and teacher of Giacomo Meyerbeer. Lauska was considered "one of the most brilliant executants of his time." Lauska wrote a great deal of piano music (approximately 25 sonatas, rondos, variations, polonaises, capriccios, etc.), much of it technically undemanding and intended for beginners, amateurs, and his pupils. His music is u...
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Henry Lawes

borndied
1595, Dec 51662, Oct 21
an English musician and composer. Lawes published a collection of his vocal pieces, Ayres and Dialogues for One, Two and Three Voyces, in 1653. He followed it with two other books under the same title, in 1655 and 1658 . Lawes's name has become known beyond musical circles because of his friendship with John Milton, for whose masque, Comus, he supplied the i...
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William Lawes

borndied
1602, Apr1645, Sep 24
an English composer and musician. He composed secular music and songs for court masques (and doubtless played in them), as well as sacred anthems and motets for Charles's private worship. He is most remembered today for his sublime viol consort suites for between three and six players and his lyra viol music. His use of counterpoint and fugue and his tendenc...
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Cross-listed in Clergy

Ferdinando Antonio Lazzari

borndied
1678, Apr 111754, Apr 19
an Italian composer and religious cleric. Fra Ferdinando Lazzari came in 1693 in a Minoritenkloster in Bologna, where he one year later, the profession took off. From 1702 he was choirmaster of the monastery. According to Padre Martini , he learned to play the organ at Padre Vastamigli, play the violin at Domenico Gabrielli and in theory of composition he wa...
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Simon Le Duc

aka: Leduc
borndied
1742, Jan 151777, Jan 22
a French violinist, soloist at the Concert Spirituel, music publisher and composer. Not much is known of his life. His younger brother, Pierre Le Duc (1755–1818), was also a violinist. It is not clear which of the two brothers was mentioned by mention of the violinist Le Duc in the letters of Mozart.
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Ninot le Petit

aka: Johannes Parvi
bornactivedied
unknown1500s-15201520
a French composer of the Renaissance, probably associated with the French royal chapel. Although a substantial amount of his music has survived in several sources, his actual name is not known with certainty. Le Petit's style is similar to that of Antoine de Févin and Jean Mouton, the two most famous French composers associated with the French royal chapel....
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Jean-Francois Le Sueur

aka: Jean-François, Lesueur
borndied
1760, Feb 151837, Oct 6
a French composer, best known for his oratorios and operas. Beginning as a chorister at the collegial church of Abbeville, then at the cathedral of Amiens, where he pursued his music studies, Le Sueur was named chorus master at the cathedral of Sées. He went to Paris to study harmony with the Abbé Nicolas Roze, chorus master at the Saints-Innocents. Le Sue...
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Cross-listed in ArtistsWriters

Edward Lear

borndied
1812, May 12/131888, Jan 29
an English artist, illustrator, musician, author and poet, and is known now mostly for his literary nonsense in poetry and prose and especially his limericks, a form he popularised. His principal areas of work as an artist were threefold: as a draughtsman employed to illustrate birds and animals; making coloured drawings during his journeys, which he reworke...
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Cross-listed in Performers

Francesca Lebrun

aka: Franziska Danzi Lebrun
borndied
1756, Mar 241791, May 14
a noted 18th-century German singer and composer. Her compositions for Fortepiano and Violin were published in 1780. Schubart noted that she could sing A, 3 octaves above middle C with ‘clarity and distinctness’. Charles Burney wrote that and when she and her husband performed divisions of thirds and sixths it was impossible to discover who was uppermost ...
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Ludwig August Lebrun

borndied
1752, Apr/May1790, Dec 16
a German oboist and composer. He started playing with the orchestra at the age of 12 and became a full member at the age of 15. In the summer of 1778 he married the soprano Franziska Danzi, one of the most outstanding and well-known singers of the time and the sister of composer Franz Danzi. With her he travelled extensively across Europe: Milan, Paris, Lond...
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Sophie Lebrun

borndied
1781, Jul 201863, Jul 23
a German pianist and composer, the daughter of Munich court oboist Ludwig August Lebrun and singer and composer Francesca Lebrun (Franziska Danzi). Sophie Lebrun was born in London while her mother was on tour. Lebrun composed sonatas and other piano works which were unpublished and became lost. She died in Munich.
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Jean-Marie Leclair the Elder

aka: Leclair l'aîné
borndied
1697, May 101764, Oct 22
a Baroque violinist and composer. He is considered to have founded the French violin school. His brothers Jean-Marie Leclair the younger (1703–77), Pierre Leclair (1709–84) and Jean-Benoît Leclair (1714–after 1759) were also musicians. In 1758, after the break-up of his second marriage, Leclair purchased a small house in a dangerous Parisian neighborh...
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Jean-Marie Leclair the Younger

aka: Leclair le cadet
borndied
17031777, Nov 30
a French composer, and younger brother of the better-known Jean-Marie Leclair l'aîné ("the elder"). Little is known about his life. His musical output includes several works for two violins. In 1733, he produced Le Rhône et la Saône, a vocal piece. Publications include his Opus 1 (1739) and Opus 2 (1750).
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Louis James Alfred Lefebure-Wely

aka: Lefébure-Wély
borndied
1817, Nov 131869, Dec 31
a French organist and composer. He played a major role in the development of the French symphonic organ style and was closely associated with the organ builder Aristide Cavaillé-Coll, inaugurating many new Cavaillé-Coll organs. His playing was virtuosic, and as a performer he was rated above eminent contemporaries including César Franck. His compositions,...
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Jean-Xavier Lefevre

aka: Lefèvre
borndied
1763, Mar 61829, Nov 9
a Swiss-born French clarinettist. In 1778, at the age of 15, Lefèvre became a member of the French Guards band. When the National Guard was formed in the year of the Revolution he played in this and from 1790 was its deputy conductor. In 1814 he was made a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor. He has surviving pieces for band and pedagogical works.
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Cross-listed in Writers

William Leighton

borndied
1565 ca1622
an Elizabethan composer and editor who published The Teares and Lamentatacions of a Sorrowfull Soule (1614) which comprised 55 pieces by 21 composers (among them John Bull, William Byrd, John Dowland and Martin Peerson), including eight by himself. There is a mode...
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Jacques-Nicolas Lemmens

borndied
1823, Jan 31881, Jan 30
an organist and composer for his instrument. In 1847, Lemmens won the Paris Conservatoire's prestigious Prix de Rome with his Le roi Lear ("King Lear"). One year later he published his first work for organ: Dix improvisations dans le style sévère et chantant ("Ten improvisations in a strict and singing style"). In March 1849 he was appointed organ teacher ...
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Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne [3]

aka: Moyne
borndied
1751, Apr 31796, Dec 30
a French composer, chiefly of operas. Born in Eymet, Dordogne, he first worked as a musician in Berlin and Warsaw, where in 1775 he produced his first opera, Le bouquet de Colette, starring his pupil Antoinette de Saint-Huberty (née Clavel). He returned to France and wrote the tragic opera Électre, which received its premiere in 1782.
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Johan Nicolaas Lentz

borndied
1719 ca1782
a Dutch composer of German descent.


Leonardo Leo

aka: Lionardo Oronzo Salvatore de Leo
borndied
1694, Aug 51744, Oct 31
a Neapolitan Baroque composer. Leo was the first of the Neapolitan school to obtain a complete mastery over modern harmonic counterpoint. His sacred music is masterly and dignified, logical rather than passionate, and free from the sentimentality which is present in the work of Francesco Durante and Giovanni Battista Pergolesi. His serious operas suffer from...
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Leone Leoni [2]

bornactivedied
1560 ca1588-16271627
a North Italian polyphonic composer who served as maestro di cappella at Vicenza cathedral from 1588. He composed motets for antiphonal choirs, some in many parts, with instrumental accompaniment. As would be expected of a cathedral maestro di cappella, he also produced masses, psalms, magnificats and other liturgical music, some published in his Cantici sac...
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Cross-listed in Performers

Richard Leveridge

borndied
1670, Jul 191758, Mar 22
an English bass singer of the London stage and a composer of baroque music, including many popular songs. At various times between 1697 and 1728 Leveridge published volumes of his own songs, and numerous single items including his popular theatre songs appeared as separate printed sheets throughout his career.
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Johann Georg Lickl

borndied
1769, Apr 111843, May 12
an Austrian composer, organist, Kapellmeister in the main church of Pécs, and piano teacher. He wrote operas, one wind quintet, three string quartets, and served as a Kapellmeister at several churches. From 1807 until his death he was choirmaster at what is now Pecs. A large portion of his output is sacred music, including masses and requiems.
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Cristiano Giuseppe Lidarti

borndied
1730, Feb 231795
an Austrian composer, born in Vienna of Italian descent. Lidarti is best known for his rediscovered oratorio Esther composed in Hebrew for the Jewish community in Amsterdam. The text may have been prepared for Lidarti by the Jewish composer Abraham Caceres.
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Helene Liebmann

borndied
17961835+
a German pianist and composer. She was born in Berlin and studied music with Franz Lauska and Ferdinand Ries. A child prodigy, she made her debut before age 13 and published her Piano Sonata when she was 15. She married around 1814 and may have moved with her husband to Vienna and then London. She was present at a Clara Wieck (Schumann) concert in 1835. Lieb...
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Ekaterina Likoshin

bornactivedied
unknown1800-18101810
a Russian pianist and composer who published short works for keyboard in St. Petersburg through publisher F.A. Dittmar. Not much is known about her life. She is thought to have been employed by Count Uvarov. Only a few of her works survive.
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Hampartsoum Limondjian

borndied
17681839, Jun 29
an Armenian composer of Armenian church and classical music and musical theorist who developed the Hampartsoum notation system. The system was the main music notation for Armenian and Ottoman classical music until modern times and is still used by the Armenian Apostolic Church.
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Jiri Ignac Linek

aka: Jirí Ignác
borndied
1725, Jan 211791, Dec 30
a renowned Czech late-Baroque composer and pedagogue, said to have composed over 300 works in his lifetime. He is especially noted for his Christmas pastorals and for his initiation of a literary brotherhood within Bohemia. Most of Linek's music was composed for the church. His favorite instrument was the harpsichord. Many of his religious works were written...
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Carl Ferdinand August Linger

borndied
1810, Mar 151862, Feb 16
a musician and composer who was born in Berlin but spent much of his life in Australia. His 'Ninety third Psalm' and 'Gloria' appeared in a printed programme of 1855, and his 'Concert Overture' is dated 1856. An undated manuscript of four songs for soprano and pianoforte has also been preserved. He had conducted Adelaide's first Philharmonic Orchestra and in...
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Thomas Linley the Elder

borndied
1733, Jan 171795, Nov 19
an English tenor and musician active in Bath, Somerset. As a composer, Linley wrote and arranged some songs and ensembles for The Duenna in 1775. An earlier composition, Thomas Hull's The Royal Merchant, performed at Covent Garden in 1767, was noted as a failure as well as a success. An unnamed critic wrote in The London Stage that "The music may be good, bu...
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Thomas Linley the Younger

borndied
1756, May 71778, Aug 5
one of the most precocious composers and performers that have been known in England, and became known as the "English Mozart". A significant amount of Linley's compositions have been lost including many in the Drury Lane Fire of 1809. Surviving works attest to his congenial mastery of melody, gift for counterpoint, and musical imagination. Linley composed vi...
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Franz Liszt

bornactivedied
1811, Oct 221820-18851886, Jul 31
a prolific 19th-century Hungarian composer, virtuoso pianist, conductor, music teacher, arranger, organist, philanthropist, author, nationalist and a Franciscan tertiary. Liszt gained renown in Europe during the early nineteenth century for his prodigious virtuosic skill as a pianist. He was a friend, musical promoter and benefactor to many composers of his ...
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Henry Charles Litolff

borndied
1818, Feb 51891, Aug 5/6
a piano virtuoso, composer of Romantic music and music publisher. He became a prolific composer, although he is now known mainly as the founder of the Litolff Edition of classical and modern music. His most notable works were the five concertos symphoniques, essentially symphonies with piano obbligato.
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Antoni Lliteres Carrio

aka: Antoni de Literes, Antoni Literes Carrión
borndied
1673, Jun 181747, Jan 18
a Spanish composer of zarzuelas. As with other national forms of baroque opera, Literes's stage works employ a wide variety of musical forms - arias, ariettas and recitative (accompanied and unaccompanied) as well as dance movements and choruses, though here mingled with spoken verse dialogue. His use of the orchestra follows French and Italian practice in i...
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Alonso Lobo

borndied
1555, Feb1617, Apr 5
a Spanish composer of the late Renaissance. Lobo's music combines the smooth contrapuntal technique of Palestrina with the sombre intensity of Victoria. Some of his music also uses polychoral techniques, which were common in Italy around 1600, though Lobo never used more than two choirs (contemporary choral music of the Venetian school often used many more ...
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Pietro Locatelli

borndied
1695, Sep 31764, Mar 30
an Italian Baroque composer and violinist. When Locatelli went to Amsterdam in 1729, he discovered the centre of European music publishing. He published his Opp. 2–6, 8 and 9 and a new edition of Op. 1 in Amsterdam, and Op. 7 in the neighbouring city of Leiden. He took great care to achieve flawless editions. Locatelli gave the well-arranged works to diffe...
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Cross-listed in Writers

Matthew Locke

borndied
1621 ca1677, Aug
an English Baroque composer and music theorist. Locke, with Christopher Gibbons (the son of Orlando), composed the score for Cupid and Death, the 1653 masque by Caroline-era playwright James Shirley. Their score for that work is the sole surviving score for a dramatic work from that era. Locke was one of the quintet of composers who provided music for The Si...
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Jacques Loeillet

borndied
16851748
a Baroque-era composer and oboist. He was born in Ghent, Belgium, which was then part of the Spanish Netherlands. He was the younger brother of Jean-Baptiste Loeillet. He composed works for oboe, violin and for string ensembles. He served as an oboist for the Elector in Bavaria, and later in Versailles for Louis XV. He returned to Ghent in 1746 and died ther...
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Jean Baptiste Loeillet of Ghent

aka: Loeillet de Gant
borndied
1688, Jul 61720 ca
a Belgian composer, born in Ghent. He spent the largest part of his life in France in service to the archbishop of Lyon, Paul-François de Neufville de Villeroy. He wrote many works for recorder, including trio sonatas, unaccompanied sonatas for 2 recorders, and solo sonatas. He died in Lyons around 1720.
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Jean-Baptiste Loeillet of London

aka: John Loeillet
borndied
1680, Nov 181730, Jul 19
a Flemish baroque composer as well as a performer on the recorder, flute, oboe, and harpsichord. He is called the London Loeillet to distinguish him from another famous composer, his first cousin Jean Baptiste Loeillet of Ghent, and he was the elder brother of Jacques Loeillet, also a composer.
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Carl Albert Loeschhorn

borndied
18191905
German composer, pianist and piano teacher


Carl Loewe

aka: Löwe, Johann Carl Gottfried Loewe
borndied
1796, Nov 301869, Apr 20
a German composer, tenor singer and conductor. In his lifetime, his songs (Lieder) were well enough known for some to call him the "Schubert of North Germany", and Hugo Wolf came to admire his work. He is less known today, but his ballads and songs, which number over 400, are occasionally performed.
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Nicola Bonifacio Logroscino

borndied
16981764 ca
an Italian composer who is best known for his operas. Logroscino has been credited with the invention of the concerted operatic finale, but as far as can be seen from the score of Governalore and the few remaining fragments of other operas, his finales show no advance upon those of Leo. As a musical humorist, he has been classed with Gioacchino Rossini.
Links (1)


Antonio Lolli

borndied
1725 ca1802, Aug 10
an Italian violinist and composer. Lolli published eight Violin concertos, of which the concerto no. 7 in G major was the most successful. Other works include six sonatas (duets) Op.9 for two violins (1785), three collections of six sonatas each for violin and bass (1760, 1769, 1767), and 36 Capriccios for solo violin, as well as the didactic L'école du vio...
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Marie Emmanuelle Bayon Louis

bornactivedied
17461760s-1770s1825, Mar 29
a French composer, pianist, and salonnière. Very little is known for certain about her life. The Norton/Grove Dictionary of Women Composers credits her for making the fortepiano popular in France. In 1770 she married the architect Victor Louis. Only a few of works are known today.
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Andrea Luchesi

aka: Lucchesi
borndied
1741, May 231801, Mar 21
an Italian composer. His career in Venice developed quickly: examiner of the organists commission in 1761, then organist at San Salvatore (1764), composer of works for "organ or cembalo", instrumental, sacred and theatre music. He composed for official celebrations, the last (1771) being the solemn funeral of the Duke of Montealegre, Spanish ambassador to V...
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Nicholas Ludford

bornactivedied
1490 ca1521-15351557 ca
n English composer of the Tudor period. He is known for his festal masses, which are preserved in two early-16th-century choirbooks, the Caius Choirbook at Caius College, Cambridge, and the Lambeth Choirbook at Lambeth Palace, London. His surviving antiphons, all incomplete, are copied in the Peterhouse Partbooks (Henrican set). Ludford is well-known as bein...
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Jean-Baptiste Lully

borndied
16321687
an Italian-French composer. He was court composer to Louis XIV, founding the national French opera and producing court ballets for Molière's plays. In close collaboration with the librettist Philippe Quinault, Lully founded the tradition of tragédie en musique, combining singing, dance and visual spectacle, which would remain the most prestigious French op...
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Timeline (2)Links (1)


Thomas Lupo the Elder

borndied
1571, Aug1627, Dec
an English composer and viol player of the late Elizabethan and Jacobean eras. Lupo was one of the principal figures in the development of the viol consort repertory. In addition, he was a significant composer of sacred vocal music. He probably wrote a considerable quantity of music for the court violin ensemble, however almost none of it survives; it has be...
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Cross-listed in ClergyWriters

Martin Luther

borndied
1483, Nov 101546, Feb 18
a German professor of theology, composer, priest, monk and a seminal figure in the Protestant Reformation. Luther came to reject several teachings and practices of the Roman Catholic Church. He strongly disputed the claim that freedom from God's punishment for sin could be purchased with money, proposing an academic discussion of the practice and efficacy of...
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Timeline (12)Links (24)Notes (1)


Carolus Luython

borndied
15571620, Aug 2
a late composer of the "fifth generation" of the Franco-Flemish school. Luython was born in Antwerp, and was recruited as a child to serve in the choir of Maximilian II in Vienna. After Maximillian's death in 1576 Luython become court organist and composer to Rudolf II first in Vienna, then in Prague, while his fellow Fleming Philippe de Monte was Kapellmeis...
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Luzzasco Luzzaschi

borndied
1545 ca1607, Sep 10
an Italian composer, organist, and teacher of the late Renaissance. He was born and died in Ferrara, and despite evidence of travels to Rome it is assumed that Luzzaschi spent the majority of his life in his native city. He was a skilled representative of the late Italian madrigal style, along with Palestrina, Wert, Monte, Lassus, Marenzio, Gesualdo and othe...
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