(b. Kherson, S. Russia, 1855; d. Toronto 1915)

See also portrait of Michael

A pupil of Nicholas Rubenstein, pianist and pedagogue Michael Hambourg graduated in 1879 from the St. Petersburg Conservatory of Music and taught at the Moscow Philharmonic Conservatory. His pupils included his son Mark, who later studied with Leschetizky, and was to become one of the world’s great pianists.

He married Catherine Girshkovich of Boguchar, a small town near Voronezh, where their son Mark Hambourg was born.

In 1890 Professor Hambourg moved with his family to London, where he was affiliated with London Academy and the Guildhall School of Music. A very propitious move in 1910 took him to Toronto where, with his sons Jan and Boris, he established and directed the Hambourg Conservatory of Music in the spacious Gooderham property at the northeast corner of Sherbourne and Wellesley Streets. His students’ concerts at Massey and Foresters' Halls were testament to his fine teaching and to a noteworthy Toronto institution. His most eminently successful pupil was Gerald Moore, accompanist to the world’s great soloists. Included among his colleagues were Vladimir de Pachmann, whose original letter to Professor Hambourg is housed in the National Archives in Ottawa, Moritz Rosenthal, Ossip Gabrilowitch, Harold Bauer and Edouard Hesselberg (a colleague in Toronto who studied in Russia with Anton Rubinstein and who was the father of film star Melvin Douglas). His great relaxation was to enjoy himself with fellow musicians and artists at the Arts and Letters of Club of Toronto, where he frequently performed with the original Hambourg Trio.

Anecdote from Musical Notes, The Arts and Letters Club Newsletter, September-October, 1951

Michael pen drawing

Pen drawing of Michael



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