Mannes, Leopold (Damrosch)

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Mannes, Leopold (Damrosch)

Mannes, Leopold (Damrosch), American pianist, teacher, composer, and inventor, son of David Damrosch and Clara Mannes (née Damrosch) ; b. N.Y, Dec. 26, 1899; d. Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., Aug. 11, 1964. He studied at Harvard Univ. (B.A., 1920) and took courses at the Mannes School of Music and the Inst. of Musical Arts in N.Y, numbering among his teachers were Quaile, Maier, Berthe Bert, and Cortot in piano, and Johannes Schreyer, Goetschius, and Scalerò in composition. He won a Pulitzer scholarship (1925) and a Guggenheim fellowship (1927). In 1922 he made his debut in N.Y as a pianist; taught theory and composition at the Mannes School (1927–31), then worked for the Eastman Kodak Co. in Rochester, N.Y, where he invented the Kodachrome process of color photography with Loepold Godowsky, son of the pianist, in 1935. He subsequently was director (1940–48) and a teacher of theory and composition (1946–48) at the Mannes School; was its co-director (1948–52) and president (1950–64). He was also active with his own Mannes Trio (1948–55). He wrote 3 Short Pieces for Orch. (1926), incidental music to Shakespeare’s Tempest (1930), String Quartet (1928), Suite for 2 Pianos (1924), and songs.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire