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A painting on an ancient Greek vase depicts a music lesson (c. 510 BC).

Music is an art form and cultural activity whose medium is sound organized in time. The common elements of music are pitch (which governs melody and harmony), rhythm (and its associated concepts tempo, meter, and articulation), dynamics (loudness and softness), and the sonic qualities of timbre and texture (which are sometimes termed the "color" of a musical sound). Different styles or types of music may emphasize, de-emphasize or omit some of these elements. Music is performed with a vast range of instruments and vocal techniques ranging from singing to rapping; there are solely instrumental pieces, solely vocal pieces (such as songs without instrumental accompaniment) and pieces that combine singing and instruments. The word derives from Greek μουσική (mousike; "art of the Muses"). See glossary of musical terminology. Read more...

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Kathleen Mary Ferrier, CBE (22 April 1912 – 8 October 1953) was an English contralto singer who achieved an international reputation as a stage, concert and recording artist. Her death from cancer, at the height of her fame, was a shock to the musical world.

Ferrier did not take up singing seriously until 1937, when after winning a prestigious singing competition at the Carlisle Festival she began to receive offers of professional engagements as a vocalist. After the outbreak of the Second World War Ferrier was recruited by the Council for the Encouragement of [Music and] the Arts (CEMA), and in the following years became a regular performer at leading London and provincial venues, and made numerous BBC radio broadcasts.

As her reputation grew, Ferrier formed close working relationships with major musical figures, including Benjamin Britten, Sir John Barbirolli, Bruno Walter and the accompanist Gerald Moore. She became known internationally through her three tours to the United States between 1948 and 1950 and her many visits to continental Europe.

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Cover of the book with the sheet music to "Coon Coon Coon"

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