Oscar Telgmann

Oscar (Ferdinand) Telgmann. Conductor, educator, composer, violinist, b Mengeringhausen, Germany, ca 1855, d Toronto 30 Mar 1946. He began to study music when his parents emigrated to Canada and settled in Kingston, Upper Canada (Ontario). His mother was trained as a concert pianist.

Telgmann, Oscar

Oscar (Ferdinand) Telgmann. Conductor, educator, composer, violinist, b Mengeringhausen, Germany, ca 1855, d Toronto 30 Mar 1946. He began to study music when his parents emigrated to Canada and settled in Kingston, Upper Canada (Ontario). His mother was trained as a concert pianist. On his father's death in 1882 Telgmann, the eldest son, supported his brothers and sisters - all trained musically - by forming a family ensemble, the Telgmann Concert Party, which toured for several years. In 1892 he established the Kingston Conservatory of Music and School of Elocution, which he and his wife, Alida Jackson, operated for over 25 years. It was from his pupils and his family that the first Kingston SO was formed in 1914. Telgmann, the founder-conductor, continued to direct the orchestra and to teach until he retired in 1936. His most important composition was the 'Canadian military opera,' Leo, The Royal Cadet. He also wrote the operettas The Miller and the Maid and King of Siam as well as songs, marches, and other pieces. The song 'Our Premier' (1885, dedicated to Sir John A. Macdonald; repr CMH vol 3), the British Whig March (1900) and The Mascot (dedicated to the Queen's University rugby team) were among his published works. In 1895 he established the monthly The Canadian Music and Dramaand became its editor. Only the first two issues have been located. Telgmann played a key role in the musical development of Kingston for over 50 years, and several of his children became professional musicians.