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Bull, Ole (Bornemann), eccentric Norwegian violinist; b. Bergen, Feb. 5,1810; d. Lyso, near Bergen, Aug. 17, 1880. He was extremely precocious, and played the violin experimen­tally even before acquiring the rudiments of music. At the age of 9 he played solos with the Bergen Harmonic Soc. His teachers were then Niels Eriksen and J.H. Poulsen; later he had regular instruction with M. Ludholm. Ignoring academic rules, he whittled the bridge almost to the level of the finger- board, so as to be able to play full chords on all 4 strings. He was sent by his father to Christiania to study theology, but failed the entrance examinations; instead, he organized a the­ater orch., which he led with his violin. In 1829 he played in Copenhagen and Kassel. In 1831 he went to Paris, where he heard Paganini and became obsessed with the idea of imitat­ing his mannerisms and equaling his success, a fantasy devoid of all imagined reality because of Bull’s amateurish technique. However, he developed a personal type of playing that pleased the public, particularly in localities rarely visited by real artists. During the season 1836—37 he played 274 concerts in England and Ireland; in 1839 he visited the great German violinist and composer Spohr in Kassel, in the hope of receiving useful advice from him. In 1840 he played Beethoven’s Krentzer So­nata in London, with Liszt at the piano. On July 23, 1849, he announced the formation of a Norwegian Theater in Bergen, which was opened on Jan. 2,1850. While he failed to impress serious musicians and critics in Europe, he achieved his dream of artistic success in America; he made 5 concert tours across the U.S., playing popular selections and his own compositions on American themes with such fetching titles as Niagara, Soli­tude of the Prairies, and To the Memory of Washington, inter­spersing them with his arrangements of Norwegian folk songs. He entertained a strong conviction that Norway should gener­ate its own national art, but the practical applications of his musical patriotism were failures because of his lack of formal study and a concentration on tawdry effects; still, it may be argued that he at least prepared the ground for the emergence of true Norwegian music; indeed, it is on his recommendation that Grieg was sent to study at the Leipzig Cons. Characteristi­cally, Ole Bull became attracted by the then-current ideas of communal socialism. In 1852 he purchased 11,144 acres in Pennsylvania for a Norwegian settlement, but his lack of busi­ness sense led his undertaking to disaster. The settlement, planned on strict socialist lines, was given the name Oleana, thus establishing a personal connection with the name of its unlucky founder. Oleana soon collapsed, but Ole Bull earned admiration in Norway as a great national figure. Many of his violin pieces, mostly sentimental or strident in nature, with such titles as La preghiera d’una madre, Variazioni di bravura, Polacca guerriera, etc., were publ., but they sank into predict­able desuetude.