Oesten, Theodor



German pianist, composer and arranger of instrumental music. Born and died in Berlin. He was a performer on many instruments and a popular piano-teacher. He is said to have learned to play the piano from the instruction of a schoolmaster, and was taught the clarinet by a chambermusician, Tanne, and other wind and string instruments by Politzki, the town musician at Fürstenwald. After he had written a large number of dance-pieces, he took lessons in composition under Bohmer privately, and from W. A. Bach, Schneider and Rubenhagen at the Royal Academy of Arts at Berlin. Abandoning the style of his masters, he catered to public taste and his light and brilliant compositions, especially the rondo, Les premieres violettes, enjoyed great popularity. Among his works are symphonies; fugues; quartets; masses; motets; and some good transcriptions from the well-known operas. Despite their shallowness they are still frequently used and much imitated.