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Ernest Bloch


About this Artist

Born: 1880, Geneva, SwitzerlandDied: 1959, Portland, Oregon (U.S.A.)

"Art is the outlet of the mystical, emotional needs of the human spirit; it is created rather by instinct than by intelligence, rather by intuition than by will."

Bloch is best-known for works inspired by Jewish traditions, but he composed music in all genres. During his teens he studied violin and composition in Geneva; later he worked for two years in Brussels with the violinist Ysaÿe and with a student of César Franck in composition. Travels took him to Frankfurt, Munich, and Paris, after which, in 1904, he returned to Geneva, where the nature of his creative identity began to emerge. Coming to America in 1916 and taking citizenship in 1924, Bloch's star rose rapidly as composer and educator; he won both praise and prizes for his works.

Further Listening:

Schelomo (Hebrew Rhapsody) for Cello and Orchestra (1915)Ma, Baltimore Symphony, Zinman (Sony Classical)

Avodath Hakodesh (Sacred Service) (1930-33)Merrill, New York Philharmonic, Bernstein (Sony Classical)