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Thirteen musicians from diverse cultures, time periods, and stations in life are presented here as examples of what gifted and determined young people have achieved in their artistic careers before they turned 25 years old. Students will be inspired as they read the life stories of these musicians, who often had to overcome such obstacles as poverty and racism in order to create and to share their works. Teachers and librarians looking for biographies of truly gifted young people for their students will find an inspiring collection of both classical composers and modern-day talents―some for which little information has been published previously.
Students will meet such individuals as Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart, the classical giants who practiced and composed for hours each day in their early childhood to create the standards of perfection in music to which all composers aspire, as well as people like Ray Charles, who overcame blindness and severe poverty to become a best-selling singer and songwriter, and such popular performers as Charlotte Church and Midori. Entries have been carefully selected to represent men and women of various backgrounds, nationalities and talents to provide a well-rounded sampling. Each entry concludes with a bibliography of resources for students who wish to explore the subject further.
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IRENE EARLS received her Ph.D. in the History of Art from the University of Georgia and is a Professor at the University of Florida, teaching advanced placement courses to academically gifted high school students. She is also the author of Renaissance Art: A Topical Dictionary (Greenwood, 1987) and Baroque Art: A Topical Dictionary (Greenwood, 1996).From School Library Journal:
Grade 7 Up-This collection of brief biographies, ranging in length from 4 to 12 pages, features 13 musicians who achieved fame before the age of 25. Many, including Bach, Beethoven, Pablo Casals, Sarah Chang, Charlotte Church, Midori, Mozart, Paganini, and Isaac Stern, were child prodigies. The others-Louis Armstrong, Ray Charles, Bob Dylan, and John Lennon-began receiving public acclaim as teens. Some became accomplished musicians despite the hardships of poverty, physical handicaps, or being orphaned, while others grew up in easier circumstances with supportive parents. What all of the subjects share is a remarkable musical talent and the drive to pursue and develop it. While each biography recounts the individual's career in relatively chronological order, there are some instances in which the sequence of events jumps forward and then back in time in a way that can be confusing. A black-and-white photo, a sidebar box of basic biographical facts, and a bibliography of four or five resources accompany each entry. A five-page glossary of musical terms appears at the end of the volume. A useful introduction to some of the musical giants of the last four centuries.
Ginny Gustin, Sonoma County Library System, Santa Rosa, CA
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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