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Cello Birthdays – 17 August


Nicola Porpora

(17 August 1686 – 3 March 1768)

Italian composer, singing teacher, composition teacher

Nicola Porpora. Portrait by unknown painter.

Here are the first two movements of his Cello Concerto in G Major, performed by cellist Gaetano Nasillo with l’Ensemble 415 directed by Chiara Banchini:


Francis Bennat

(17 August 1844 – 27 August 1917)

Austrian cellist and musicologist

Francis Bennat


T. J. Anderson

Happy birthday!

American composer, conductor, orchestrator, and educator

T.J. Anderson

Here are his “Spirit Songs: Gospels, Serenades, and Vamps” recorded by the Mallarmé Chamber Players:


Stephen Geber

Happy birthday!

American cellist – the longest-serving principal cellist of The Cleveland Orchestra

Stephen Geber

Here he plays Bloch’s Schelomo: Rhapsodie Hébraïque for Violoncello and Orchestra with The Cleveland Orchestra under Christoph von Dohnányi:



Alexander Ivashkin

(17 August 1948 – 31 January 2014)

Russian cellist, writer, academic, and conductor

Alexander Ivashkin. Photo by Dmitrismirnov, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Alexander Ivashkin (1990). Photo by Dmitri N. Smirnov, CC BY-SA 3.0.

Here is a recording of a performance he gave in 2010 with pianist Dmitri Alexeev of the fourth movement of the Prokofiev Cello Sonata in C Major, Op. 119:


Your Turn

Know of other cellists, cello makers, composers of music played by cellists, or those with a strong tie to the cello world born on this day? This is a work in progress. We’d love to hear from you if you have suggestions, additions, or corrections. Thank you!

We include those with recordings and/or images available online.