Misha Mengelberg, Ukrainian-born Dutch jazz pianist and composer, Died at 81


Misha Mengelberg was born on June 5, 1935, and died on March 3, 2017.

He was a Dutch jazz pianist and composer.

He won the Gaudeamus International Composers Award in 1961.

He was the son of the Dutch conductor Karel Mengelberg, who was himself the nephew of the conductor Willem Mengelberg.

Mengelberg’s family moved back to the Netherlands in the late 1930s and the young Mengelberg began learning the piano at age five.

He had briefly studied architecture before entering the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, where he studied music from 1958 to 1964.

At that time, Mengelberg won the first prize at a jazz festival in Loosdrecht and became associated with Fluxus.

Mengelberg’s early influences included Thelonious Monk, Duke Ellington and John Cage, whom he heard lecture at Darmstadt.

He had first appearance on record was on one of Eric Dolphy’s final recording, Last Date (1964).

He died in Amsterdam.

Misha Mengelberg passed away at 81 years old.