Kellner, Ernst August


Singer and pianist; a phenomenal case of musical precocity. Was born at Windsor, England, where his father played in Queen Charlotte's band, and began to study the piano when he was two years old, playing a Handel concerto when he was five. At the request of the King his voice was trained, and when eight years old he sang at a Court concert. He studied with Rauzzini at Bath, sang at the theatre there, made a tour with Incledon, and finally married and went to Italy, where he continued his studies with Porri, Casella, Nozzari and Crescentini. He sang at the  Fenice Theatre at Venice and then made some extensive tours, winning much applause at Paris and St. Petersburg. He returned to London and became choirmaster at the Bavarian Chapel, devoting some of his time to teaching and composing. He died there when only forty-seven years old. He published many songs which became popular, as County Guy; The Lasses With a Simpering Air; The Blind Mother; The Shepherd's Chief Mourner; Medora's Song; and Through All My Dreams. He also began an opera, Poland, which was never finished; masses; and a symphony and fugue for voices.