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Johann Nepomuk Hummel Program Notes and Sheet Music

Johann Nepomuk Hummel (14 November 1778 – 17 October 1837) was an Austrian composer and virtuoso pianist. His music reflects the transition from the Classical to the Romantic musical era. He was a pupil of Mozart, Salieri and Clementi. He also knew Beethoven and Schubert.

Hummel was born as an only child (which was unusual for that period) in Pressburg, Kingdom of Hungary (now Bratislava, Slovakia). He was named after the Czech patron saint John of Nepomuk. His father, Johannes Hummel, was the director of the Imperial School of Military Music in Vienna; his mother, Margarethe Sommer Hummel, was the widow of the wigmaker Josef Ludwig. The couple married just four months beforehand. Hummel was a child prodigy. At the age of eight, he was offered music lessons by the classical composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who was impressed with his ability.

Hummel studied with Mozart for two years, and then with Salieri and Clementi. He quickly became one of the most sought-after pianists in Europe. He toured extensively, and gave concerts in London, Paris, and other major cities. He also published a number of instructional books on piano playing.

In addition to his work as a pianist, Hummel was also a prolific composer. He wrote over 100 works, including operas, symphonies, concertos, chamber music, and choral music. His music is often praised for its technical virtuosity and its melodic beauty. He was a master of counterpoint and orchestration, and his works are often considered to be among the most technically challenging in the repertoire.

Hummel died in Weimar, Germany, in 1837. He was only 58 years old. His funeral was attended by many of the leading composers and musicians of the day. He is buried in the Weimar Stadtfriedhof.

Hummel's music has been largely neglected in recent years. However, there has been a revival of interest in his work in recent decades. His music is now being performed more often, and his compositions are being studied by a new generation of musicians.

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