The Blog


Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847)

Life and Musical Career
• Born in Hamburg, Germany, into an intellectual and musical Jewish family
• Grandfather, Moses Mendelssohn, was a rabbi and philosopher
• Father, Abraham, was a merchant banker
• Mother, Lea, supervised children’s musical education
• Felix was a fourth child, oldest sister Fanny was a talented pianist and composer
• Because of political and social concerns, the family was converted to Christianity and added Bartholdy to their surname
• Age of 7, Felix had lessons with pianist Marie Bigot in Paris
• Age of 10, studying music history with Carl Friedtich Zelter, director of the Berlin Singakademie
• Age of 12, travels to Europe countries, meets German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
• Age of 16 meets Franz Liszt and Luigi Cherubini.