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Alexander Avramenko

George Carl Johann Antheil was born on 8 July 1900 in Trenton, New Jersey, the son of William and Wihelmine Antheil, owners of a small shoe store. Antheil began his composition studies at the age of sixteen with Constain von Sternberg, a pupil of Liszt, and later with Ernest Bloch. Studies with Bloch ended prematurely in 1921 when a lack of money sent young Antheil to Philadelphia in search of a patron. He was directed to Mrs Edward Bok, who in 1924 would found the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. Having found a patron, he began to formulate his plan to tour Europe as a concert pianist and composer.

In 1923, Antheil moved to Paris where he entered into the center of the artistic avant-garde. James Joyce, Ezra Pound, Ernest Hemingway, Man Ray, Léger, Satie, Picasso and many others were to become his friends and colleagues. On 4 October 1934 Antheil made his public début in Paris, at the Champs Elysées Theatre, and as a result of the ensuing riot, achieved his goal and was solidly established as the enfant terrible du jour.




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