Yehudi Menuhin

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Menuhin, Yehudi

(yəho͞o`dē mĕn`yo͞oĭn), 1916–99, British violinist and conductor, b. New York City. Menuhin, an extraordinary prodigy, began playing the violin at four. He made his debut with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra at seven, then studied in Europe with Adolf BuschBusch, Adolf
, 1891–1952, German-Swiss violinist. He studied at the Cologne Conservatory. From 1919 to 1935 he headed outstanding chamber music groups, including the Busch Quartet, one of the greatest of the early 20th cent.
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 and Georges EnescoEnesco, Georges
, Rom. George Enescu, 1881–1955, Romanian violinist, composer, and conductor; studied at the Vienna Conservatory and in Paris with Massenet, Fauré, and others.
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. After a world tour (1934–35) of unprecedented success, he retired to study for two years. During World War II he performed hundreds of concerts for Allied troops and relief efforts. He was the founder of Switzerland's Gstaad Festival (1957). Menuhin introduced little-known works and promoted Eastern music in lectures and performances, such as his collaboration with Ravi ShankarShankar, Ravi
(Robindra Shankar Chowdhury), 1920–2012, Indian sitarist and composer, b. Varanasi. He was the first Indian instrumentalist to attain an international reputation and is credited with introducing traditional Indian music to the West.
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, East Meets West. BartókBartók, Béla
, 1881–1945, Hungarian composer and collector of folk music. He studied (1899–1903) and later taught piano at the Royal Academy, Budapest.
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's Sonata for Solo Violin was written for Menuhin. He became a British subject and was knighted (1985); in 1993 he was created Baron Menuhin of Stoke D'Abernon.

Bibliography

See his Theme and Variations (1972) and Unfinished Journey (1977); biographies by R. Magidoff (1955) and N. Wymer (1961).

His sister, the pianist Hepzibah Menuhin, 1920–81, b. San Francisco, also a prodigy, often appeared in recital with him. Yaltah Menuhin, 1921–2001, b. San Francisco, their sister and the youngest of the three, was also a classical pianist.

Menuhin, Yehudi

 

Born Apr. 22, 1916, in New York. American violinist.

Menuhin was a student of L. Persinger, A. Busch, and G. Enesco. He made his first public appearance at the age of seven. One of the greatest violinists of our times, he has toured many countries. His first concert tour in the USSR was in 1945. Menuhin, who is also a conductor, has lived in London since 1963. Drawing upon the experience of teaching musically gifted children in the USSR, he founded a special music school in 1964 in the city of Stoke d’Abernon in England. Menuhin is the president of the International Music Council of UNESCO. He sometimes performs with his sister, Hephzibah (born May 20, 1920, in San Francisco), who is a pianist.

REFERENCES

Gavoty, B. Yehudi Menuhin et Georges Enesco. Geneva-Monaco, 1955. Spingel, H. O. Y. Menuhin. Berlin, 1964.

Menuhin, Yehudi

(1916–  ) violinist; born in New York City. He grew up in San Francisco, where he began violin study at age three and made his public debut at age seven. Within a few years he had been acclaimed as a prodigy, finding resounding successes in Europe (where he studied with Georges Enesco) and playing the Beethoven Violin Concerto in New York in 1927. The next year, at age 12, he performed concertos by Beethoven, Brahms, and Bach in one concert of the Berlin Philharmonic. In the early 1930s a world tour took him to 73 cities in 13 countries. During World War II he concertized tirelessly for Allied troops. Largely based in Switzerland and England after the war, he conducted as often as he played, becoming a fixture of music festivals and, from 1969, director of England's Windsor Festival. In the 1960s he helped popularize Indian music in the West. Besides playing the standard repertoire, he commissioned and played important works from composers including Bartók and Walton.