“Time is a great teacher, but unfortunately it kills all its pupils.”
Hector Berlioz (1803-1869) suggested by Rick Isaacs
Born in France, Berlioz was initially sent to Paris to study medicine, but spent the majority of his time in the library of the Conservatoire, in which he later enrolled to study composition. He himself was influenced by Beethoven, Gluck, and Mozart, among others, but would go on to have a profound effect on symphonic music, especially in powerful instrumentation, along with Liszt and Wagner, his contemporaries. Much of Berlioz’s work was inspired by the poetry of Byron, Goethe, and Shakespeare; his best known work, Symphonie fantastique, was inspired in part by Thomas deQuincey’s Confessions of an Opium Eater. Later in life, Berlioz came full circle, returning to the Paris Conservatoire to serve as Head Librarian. Gustav Mahler, Richard Strauss and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov all gave credit to Berlioz for work that pre-figured their own.