Women's Philharmonic Advocacy

Remembering Sophie Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté

by sarah - March 29, 2011.
Filed under: composers, women's history month. Tagged as: .

Born in Moscow in 1899, Sophie Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté studied piano, violin, and composition at the Paris Conservatory and continued her music education in Berlin. In her youth she toured extensively as a pianist and violinist, often performing her own works. After being widowed and touring America, performing her compositions in Philadelphia and Chicago, Eckhardt-Gramatté turned away from performance and focused almost entirely on composition. Her later years were spent in Canada, where she was the recipient of many awards and commissions. She died tragically in an accident in Germany in 1974.

Her legacy lives on in the Eckhardt-Gramatté Foundation, established by her widower to honor Sophie Carmen. Taken from the website:

The Eckhardt-Gramatté Foundation is a charitable organization, established in 1982 by Dr Ferdinand Eckhardt, former director of the Winnipeg Art Gallery, in memory an honor of his late wife, the composer and musician Sophie Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté and her first husband, German Expressionist Walter Gramatté, for the purpose of advancement of public appreciation, understanding and education of the musical and artistic works of these two people in Canada and elsewhere.

You can also find more information about Eckhardt-Gramatté through the Canadian Music Centre or the Canadian Encyclopedia.

She composed in large and small forms, including quite a lot of chamber music. However, orchestral forms also constitute a significant portion of her compositional output. Below is her Bassoon Concerto (1950):

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