Synopses & Reviews
The son of a white woman and an “African Prince,” George Polgreen Bridgetower (1780–1860) travels to Vienna to meet “bad-boy” genius Ludwig van Beethoven. The great composer’s subsequent sonata is originally dedicated to the young mulatto, but George, exuberant with acclaim, offends Beethoven over a woman. From this crucial encounter evolves a grandiose yet melancholy poetic tale.
"A virtuosic treatment of a virtuoso's life...stuffed with historical and musical arcana." The New Yorker
"Dove's richly imagined book has the sweep and vivid characters of a novel, but it's written with a poet's economy, an eye for the exact detail." Mark Doty
In a book-length lyric narrative inspired by history and imagination, a much celebrated poet re-creates the life of a nineteenth-century virtuoso violinist.
About the Author
Rita Dove, former U.S. Poet Laureate, Pulitzer Prize winner, and musician, lives in Charlottesville, where she is Commonwealth Professor of English at the University of Virginia.