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JEAN SIBELIUS - COLLECTION WITH IRVING BERLIN - HFSID 91240

Framed Gallery of History display (35x25), including Berlin's signature on a card attached to a musical biography; and a typed letter signed by Sibelius in 1953, politely declining to answer the question of whether Berlin is "America's greatest composer".

Sale Price $6,800.00

Reg. $8,000.00

Condition: lightly creased, otherwise fine condition
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JEAN SIBELIUS and IRVING BERLIN
Framed Gallery of History display (35x25), including Berlin's signature on a card attached to a musical biography; and a typed letter signed by Sibelius in 1953, politely declining to answer the question of whether Berlin is "America's greatest composer".
TLS: "Jean Sibelius" in English, 1 page, 6x8½. Järvenpää, 1953 June 4. To Cyril Clemens, President, The International Mark Twain Society. In full: "Many thanks for your latest letter with your account of my life and career. It was very well written, indeed, with much ability and sympathy. Please accept my cordial thanks for it. The article about Irving Berlin I have read with much interest. His works are indeed performed here very often. If he is America's greatest composer, is of course difficult to say. America has many prominent composers by now. It is almost impossible to say such a thing about any composer. With all my kindest regards". Mid-horizontal fold, not at signature. Fine condition. In this letter to Cyril Clemens of the Mark Twain Society, JEAN SIBELIUS (1865-1957) expressed the difficulty of calling any one composer a country's "Greatest Composer". Clemens, a grandson of Samuel "Mark Twain" Clemens' cousin John Ross Clemens, had written two articles, one about Irving Berlin (1988-1989) and one about Sibelius. Both composers are highly esteemed by their respective countries for the wide variety of music they produced but especially for their patriotic songs. Berlin received the Congressional Medal of Honor for "God Bless America" (1939), which was first written in 1918 and revised at the beginning of World War II. Sibelius received a life pension from his native Finland, to which he dedicated the patriotic "Karelia, Opus 11" (1893) and "Finlandia, Opus 26" (1899). While the Finn wrote symphonic pieces compared to the American's more traditional songs, they both greatly contributed to the world of music representative of their native lands. IRVING BERLIN signed this biographical page, in which he was christened "composer laureate", from a program of Annie Get Your Gun (1946). Lightly creased. Rippled at left blank margin. Staple holes at left edge. Overall, fine condition. His first song was "Alexander's Ragtime Band" (1911). Berlin consistently composed hit songs, such as "Always" (1925), "Blue Skies" (1927) and "Cheek to Cheek" (Top Hat, 1935). For Annie Get Your Gun, Berlin created such show stoppers as "There's No Business Like Show Business", "Doing What Comes Naturally", "The Girl That I Marry", "Anything You Can Do" and "They Say It's Wonderful". The prolific composer wrote scores for Broadway and film and more than 1000 songs. Berlin earned an Academy Award for the holiday classic "White Christmas" (1941). The son of a surgeon, Jean Sibelius studied law before devoting his life to music. He composed the bulk of his work between 1980 and 1930, during which time he wrote eight symphonies. The last, he destroyed before publication, but the prior seven reveal a wide range of approach in his search for a true symphonic form. Noted works include Kullervo Symphony, Opus 7 (1892), En Saga (1892); the Seventh Symphony (1924); and Tapiola (1926). Framed in Gallery of History style: 35½x25½.

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