Cellist and conductor Alfred Wallenstein was a prodigy on his instrument, and later became the principal cellist in two of America's finest orchestras. As a conductor, he made music over the radio on a regular basis, using that "podium of the air" to perform neglected works and those written by contemporary composers. Wallenstein could boast of a distinguished lineage: his Austrian father was a descendent of Count Wallenstein, who played a crucial role in Europe's seventeenth-century political arena. Soon after his birth, the family moved to Los Angeles. At age eight, Alfred was given a cello by his father and began lessons with the mother of composer Ferde Grofé. Following further studies with Julius Klengel, he made his debut in Los Angeles and swiftly gained a reputation as a child prodigy. After touring the country through the ...
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