Bloch, Ernest

Bloch, Ernest blŏk, Ger. blôkh [key], 1880–1959, Swiss-American composer. Among his teachers were Jaques-Dalcroze and Ysaÿe. He taught at the Geneva Conservatory, 1911–15, and at the Mannes School, New York, 1917–19 he was director of the Cleveland Institute of Music, 1920–25, and of the San Francisco Conservatory, 1925–30. His music is based in the classical tradition, but it has a peculiarly personal intensity of expression and often a distinct Hebraic quality, as in the Hebrew rhapsody Schelomo and the symphonic poem Israel (both 1916). Other outstanding works are an opera, Macbeth (1909) a concerto grosso, for string orchestra and piano (1925) the symphonic poems America (1926) and Helvetia (1929) a modern setting of the Jewish Sacred Service (1933) and A Voice in the Wilderness, for cello and orchestra (1937).

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