Ernö [Ernst von] Dohnányi
(Born; Bratislava, 27 July 1877; Died; New York, 9 Feb 1960).
Hungarian composer and pianist. He studied with Thomán and Koessler at the Budapest
Academy (1894-7) and came quickly to international eminence as both pianist and composer.
After teaching at the Berlin Hochschule (1905-15) he returned to Budapest and worked there
as pianist, teacher, conductor and composer. His influence reached generations in all
spheres of musical life and he is considered one of the chief architects of 20th-century
Hungarian musical culture; he championed the music of Bartók and Kodály. He also toured
internationally as a pianist, ranking among the greatest of his time, and as a conductor
(his pupils included Solti). He left Hungary in 1944 and in 1949 settled in the USA. His
works are in a Brahmsian style, crossed with Lisztian virtuosity and thematic
transformation; they include two symphonies (1901, 1944), two piano concertos (1898,
1947), two piano quintets (1895, 1914) and two violin concertos (1915, 1950), the popular
Variations on a Nursery Song for piano and orchestra (1914) and three string quartets
(1899, 1906, 1926).
© Groves Dictionaries, MacMillan Publishers
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