Wegelius, Martin , eminent Finnish composer and pedagogue; b. Helsinki, Nov. 10, 1846; d. there, March 22, 1906. He studied philosophy, taking his master’s degree in 1869; studied music with Rudolf Bibl in Vienna (1870-71), with Richter, Reinecke, and Jadassohn in Leipzig (1871-73), and with Rheinberger in Munich (1877-78). In 1882 he was appointed director of the newly founded Helsinki Cons., holding this post until his death. Under his guidance, the institution became one of the finest schools in Europe, with excellent teachers. Sibelius was one of the pupils of Wegelius; others were Jarnefelt, Melartin, and Palmgren. Wegelius emphasized the cultivation of national Finnish music, and thus was mainly responsible for the magnificent development of Finland as a musical nation.
Daniel Hjort, overture (1872); Divertissement a la hongroise (1880); Rondo quasi fantasia for Piano and Orch. (1872); Mignon, 6 songs with Orch., after Goethe’s Westöstlicher Diwan (1875); Christmas Cantata (1877); The 6th of May, festival cantata (1878); Violin Sonata; piano pieces; songs.
Lärobok i allmän musiklära och analys (Textbook of General Music Theory and Analysis; 2 vols., Helsinki, 1888-89); Hufvuddragen of denn västerländska musikens historia (Outlines of the History of Western Music; 3 vols., Helsinki, 1891-93); Kurs i homofons sats (Course in Homophonie Composition; 2 vols., Helsinki, 1897-1905).
K. Flodin, M. W. (in Swedish, Stockholm, 1916; in Finnish, Helsinki, 1922); O. Andersson, ed., M. W.: konstnärsbrev (M.W.: Letters; 2 vols., Helsinki, 1918-19).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire