Schoenfeld, Henry



Composer and pianist; born of German parentage in Milwaukee, Wis. Was first taught piano and composition by his father, a violoncellist who had studied at Weimar. He went to Leipsic to the Conservatory when he was eighteen, where he studied composition and instrumentation under Carl Reinecke and Leo Grill, piano under Papperitz, conducting and ensemble playing under Henry Schradieck and violin under Friedrich Hermann. He won a composition prize for a piece for chorus and orchestra, which he conducted at the Gewandhaus. Later he studied composition for a year under Eduard Lassen at Weimar. After a concert tour through northern Germany he returned to America, settling in Chicago, where he was one of the faculty of the Hershey School of Music and conductor of several musical societies, among them being the Germania Male Choral Society. He has written some excellent compositions, like Dvorak, sometimes using negro melodies as a basis, as in his Suite Op. 15. His Rural Symphony won a prize offered by the National Conservatory, and in 1899 he won the Marteau prize for the best American sonata for piano and violin. Other compositions are the overtures, In the Sunny South, and The American Flag; Springtime Symphony; Liberty, a heroic fantasy; Serenade and Intermezzo for orchestra; Gypsy Melodies for orchestra; The Three Indians, an ode for male chorus and orchestra; many minor pieces for orchestra and violin music. Of his piano-music the collection called The Festival contains some good numbers for children; others are Kleine Tanz Suite; impromptu; prelude; the collection called Mysteries of the Woodland; and his valse caprice.