Ellington Profile DLR

Georg Phillip Telemann and the piano teacher Carl Czerny are amongst the most productive composers of all time. Telemann wrote approximately 1,000 concertos while Czerny produced an equal number of piano etudes. However, this number is comparatively small next to another composer who would have been 100 years old on April 29th. Duke Ellington, one of the heroes of the Big Band and Swing Era, brought more than 2,000 works to paper. Since he wrote a lot of so-called entertainment music, one would be inclined not to take this figure too seriously. In fact, many of his pieces are songs that only last a few minutes. However, Duke Ellington also wrote very complex works, such as suites with several movements, remakes of classical compositions, and three Sacred Concerts that he wrote towards the end of his life. This music feature puts Duke Ellington's music next to works by such contemporaries as William Grant Still, George Gershwin, Count Basie and Ulysses Kay, as well as George Walker, who is one generation younger than Duke Ellington. They all defy common categories, and each of them has done it in a different way.

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