Composer

Forgotten Female Composer Finally Gets Credit for Her Famous Sonata

In 1970, a record collector located an original, long-lost sonata signed “F Mendelssohn” in a French bookstore. This collector immediately ascribed the masterpiece, “Easter Sonata,” to Felix Mendelssohn, a German composer born in 1809. The problem, as one scholar discovered decades later, was that it wasn’t Felix’s work after all. It was a composition by his older sister, Fanny Mendelssohn, a piece that has finally been performed under her name for the first time, as The Washington Post reports.

In 2010, Duke University grad student Angela Mace was able to examine the original manuscript, which was owned by a private collector and previously inaccessible to scholars. Looking at Fanny’s diary, letters and handwritten scores, Mace determined that the handwriting on “Easter…