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    About John

    John White was born in Berlin in 1936 to an English father and German mother; he arrived in London in 1939. He took piano and theory lessons from

    the age of 4 with Hélène Gipps, a second-generation pupil of Brahms. He took a lively interest from early teenage in the musical exception rather than the rule and his interests at that time included Satie, Milhaud and Hindemith, later, early Schönberg, Berg, Webern, Skalkottas and Stockhausen.

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    Then, at age 19, a step backwards to the enlightened tonality of Messiaen. He began composing at this time, while still a student at the Royal College of Music, under composition professor Bernard Stevens, and he discovered yet more traditionally tonal music with a difference: Medtner and Szymanowski. He was the first student at the Royal College of Music to play Satie, Schöenberg and Messiaen at a chamber concert. He encountered John Tilbury and Cornelius Cardew and spent the 60s deeply involved in “performance art” of the time, but broke away from Cardew and the Scratch Orchestra because of political differences. He has written many single movement piano sonatas (180 to date) under the tonal influences of Satie, Medtner and Szymanowski.

    John White 04.05.10

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