Leo Ornstein Composer

Birthday December 2, 1893
Birthplace Ukraine
Death Date Feb 24, 2002 (age 108)
Birth Sign Sagittarius


Early 20th-century experimental musician of innovative, shocking compositions. He championed avant-garde composers.

Before Fame

He became the first composer to use the tone cluster to great effect. An example of this can be found in "Wild Men's Dance" from 1913-14.


He abandoned his fame and disappeared in the mid-1920s, but continued writing, only to come back in the 1970s. His final piano sonata was published when he was 97.

Family Life

He died when he was 108 and was survived by a daughter, a son, five grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

Associated With

He began making piano rolls for the Ampico label after leaving his concert career, recording such composers as Frederic Chopin, Robert Schumann, and Franz Liszt.


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