I’m always fascinated by the stories of musicians who were famous and terribly important in their own time but whose reputations at some point dip or dim or even disappear—sometimes for no obvious reason. Today is the birthday of the Charles Martin Loeffler. Are you familiar with his music? He was born on January 30, 1861, and he had a distinguished career as both a violinist and composer.
He was co-concertmaster of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and the Boston Symphony was just one of the orchestras that often performed his compositions. John Singer Sargent painted his portrait, and Busoni and Fauré both dedicated works to him. I’ve played two of Loeffler’s pieces, his Two Rhapsodies for oboe, viola, and piano, and his Four Poems for mezzo-soprano, viola, and piano—and they’re both lovely. And as I discover more of his works I find myself wondering if it’s just a matter of time before Loeffler’s time comes…again.
This has been A Minute with Miles – a production of South Carolina Public Radio, made possible by the J.M. Smith Corporation.