Gottschalk’s unique blend of exotic cultures was key to perpetual fame during his time. By examining the compositions Bamboula (Op. 2) and Souvenir de Porto Rico (Op. 31), I will demonstrate how Gottschalk’s musical style represents an integration of Creole, New Orleans, West Indian, and Afro-Caribbean backgrounds he was exposed to throughout his life.
Gottschalk was a child prodigy, showing astonishing musical abilities at a young age. His father, against his mother’s wishes, sent him off to study music more intensively in Paris. During his time in Paris, Gottschalk studied piano with Charles Hallé, Camille Stamaty, and later studied composition with Pierre Maleden. Paris was just the beginning of the many places where he would compose some of his finest works.
Bamboula, one of Gottschalk’s early solo piano works, is part of a set of four pieces called the L...
... middle of paper ...
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Blues for New Orleans: Mardi Gras and America’s Creole Soul. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, c2006.
Starr, S. Frederick. Louis Moreau Gottschalk. New York: University of Illinois Press,
Thompson, Donald. "Puerto Rico." Grove Music Online. Edited by Deanne Root.
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the Landing of the Pilgrims to the Close of the Civil War, 1620-1865”Journal of the American Musicological Society, Vol. 18, No.2. (Accessed January 30, 2012).
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