Oistrakh, Igor' (Davidovich)
(b Odessa, 27 April 1931). Ukrainian violinist, son of David Oistrakh. His principal teacher was his father. After attending the Central Music School in Moscow, Igor' studied at the Moscow Conservatory and graduated in 1955. While still a student, he won first prize at the International Festival of Democratic Youth in Budapest in 1949 and at the Wieniawski Competition in Poznań in 1952. He was appointed to the staff of the Moscow Conservatory in 1958 (at first as assistant to his father) and became a lecturer in 1965.
His achievements have sometimes been overshadowed by comparison to his father. However, Igor' has a musical profile of his own: his approach to music is leaner and more modern, his tone cooler and less emotional, and his interpretations more detached and objective. His style lends itself particularly well to such works as Bartók’s Violin Concerto no.2. The performances by father and son in violin duets by Leclair and Spohr, as well as in double concertos, were of special interest. They also performed with Igor' as soloist and David as conductor. Igor'’s partner at the piano is his wife, Natal'ya Sertsalova. (D. Blum: ‘The Oistrakh Tradition’, The Strad, c (1989), 210–15)
Oja, Carol J(ean)
(b Hibbing, MN, 18 March 1953). American musicologist. She took the BA at St Olaf College, Minnesota in 1974 and the MA at the University of Iowa in 1976. She studied with H. Wiley Hitchcock, Barry Brook and Sherman Van Solkema at CUNY, taking the doctorate there in 1985 with a dissertation on Colin McPhee. In 1985 she became professor of music at Brooklyn College and the Graduate School, CUNY. From 1980 to 1984 she was a research assistant at the Institute for Studies in American Music at Brooklyn College; in 1993 she became director of the Institute. Her main area of study is American music, with emphasis on the 20th century. She has focussed on the period between the wars, discussing musical publications and publishers of the time. She has written on a wide range of American composers, among them McPhee, Gershwin, Copland, Sessions, Blitzstein, William Grant Still, Virgil Thomson and Elie Siegmeister; she has also edited a volume of Stravinsky’s writings in Modern Music (1982).
‘The Still-Life Paintings of William Michael Harnett: their Reflections upon Nineteenth-Century American Musical Culture’, MQ, lxiii (1977), 505–23
‘The Copland-Sessions Concerts and their Reception in the Contemporary Press’, MQ, lxv (1979), 212–29
ed.: American Music Recordings: a Discography of 20th-Century U.S. Composers (Brooklyn, NY, 1982)
ed.: Stravinsky in ‘Modern Music’, 1924–1946 (New York, 1982)
Colin McPhee (1900–1964): a Composer in Two Worlds (diss., CUNY, 1985; Washington DC, 1990)
‘Composer with a Conscience: Elie Siegmeister in Profile’, American Music, vi/2 (1988), 158–80
‘Cos Cob Press and the American Composer’, Notes, xlv (1988–9), 227–52
‘Marc Blitzstein’s The Cradle will Rock and Mass-Song Style of the 1930s’, MQ, lxxiii (1989), 445–75
ed., with R.A. Crawford and R.A. Lott: A Celebration of American Music: Words and Music in Honor of H. Wiley Hitchcock (Ann Arbor, 1990) [incl. ‘Virgil Thomson’s Harvard Years’, 323–45]
‘“New Music” and the “New Negro”: the Background of William Grant Still’s Afro-American Symphony’, Black Music Research Journal, xii (1992), 145–69
‘The USA, 1918–1945’, Modern Times from World War I to the Present, ed. R.P. Morgan (London, 1993), 206–30
‘Gershwin and American Modernists of the 1920s’, MQ, lxxviii (1994), 646–68
ed., with R. Allen: Henry Cowell’s Musical Worlds (Brooklyn, NY, 1997)
Experiments in Modern Music: New York in the 1920s (Oxford, forthcoming)
‘Women Patrons and Crusaders for Modernistic Music in New York: the 1920s’, Women Activists in American Music, ed. R. Locke and C. Barr (Berkeley, forthcoming)
Ojinaga, Joaquin de.
See Oxinaga, Joaquín de.
O’Keeffe [O’Keefe], John
(b Dublin, 24 June 1747; d Southampton, 4 Feb 1833). Irish librettist. He wrote his first play at the age of 15 and acted on the Irish stage before settling in London in 1781. He was a prolific comic dramatist for the Haymarket and Covent Garden theatres, although an accident when he was 27 led to deteriorating sight and he had to dictate all his works from 1781. His most successful pieces were librettos for pasticcio operas with music composed, selected and arranged by Samuel Arnold or William Shield. The Thespian Dictionary described O’Keeffe as having ‘an excellent taste for music, though no theoretic knowledge’, and said that the tunes for his pastoral ballad opera Collin’s Welcome (written while he was still in Ireland) were ‘of his own adapting’. He carefully designed parts for his singers, such as the ‘broken English’ role for Giovanna Sestini in The Castle of Andalusia and Patrick in The Poor Soldier for the Irish contralto Margaret Kennedy. He provided Shield with tunes for this opera by singing to him ‘the fine Irish airs’ of the harper Carolan. ‘The Ploughboy’, Shield’s most famous song, is from his short opera The Farmer. Kelly remembered O’Keeffe in 1793 as ‘broken down, and almost blind; but still full of pleasantry and anecdote’.
DNB (W. FitzPatrick)
GroveO (O. Baldwin and T. Wilson) [incl. list of libs]
The Dramatic Works of John O’Keeffe (London, 1798)
The Thespian Dictionary (London, 1802, 2/1805)
Recollections in the Life of John O’Keeffe, written by himself (London, 1826)
M. Kelly: Reminiscences (London, 1826, 2/1826/R); ed. R. Fiske (London, 1975)
A. O’Keeffe: O’Keeffe’s Legacy to his Daughter (London, 1834)
OLIVE BALDWIN, THELMA WILSON