Mikhashoff, Yvar (real name, Ronald Mackay)

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Mikhashoff, Yvar (real name, Ronald Mackay)

Mikhashoff, Yvar (real name, Ronald Mackay), American pianist and composer; b. Troy, N.Y., March 8, 1941; d. Buffalo, Oct. 11, 1993. He studied at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y., then enrolled at the Juilliard School of Music in N.Y. as a piano student of Beveridge Webster and Adele Marcus. Subsequently he studied composition on a Fulbright scholarship with Boulanger in Paris (1968–69), and also at the Univ. of Houston (B.M., 1967; M.M., 1968) and the Univ. of Tex. in Austin (D.M.A. in composition, 1973). He taught at the State Univ. of N.Y. in Buffalo (from 1973), and also toured extensively in the U.S. and Europe, being particularly noted for his championship of American music of the 19th and 20th centuries. He also appeared as a multimedia performer. In 1980 he played the principal acting role in the La Scala premiere of Bussotti’s opera La Racine in Milan. In 1982 he organized the Holland Festival’s 2-week-long celebration of 200 years of Dutch-American friendship through a series of 9 thematic concerts covering 250 years of American music.


Dances for Davia I-II for Flute and Piano (1958, 1979); Concerto No. 1 for Piano, Winds, and Percussion (1965); Viola Concerto (1969); Nocturne for Cello and Piano (1977); Light from a Distant Garden for String Quartet (1983); Grand Bowery Tango for Flute and Ensemble (1985); Night Dances for String Trio (1985); Twilight Dances for Violin, Contrabass, Piano, and Percussion (1986); Evening Dances for Violin and Piano (1987); piano pieces; several vocal works, including In Memoriam Igor Stravinsky for Voice, Flute, Clarinet, and Cello (1971) and Improvisations on the Last Words of Chief Seattle for Speaker, Percussion, Mime Dancer, and Syllabist (1976).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

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Mikhashoff, Yvar (real name, Ronald Mackay)

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