Ossip Gabrilowitsch (1878-1936).

Studied the piano and composition at the St Petersburg Conservatory, with Anton Rubinstein, Anatoly Lyadov, Alexander Glazunov and Nikolai Medtner among others. After graduating in 1894, he spent two years studying piano with Teodor Leszetycki in Vienna. 06-10-1909 Ossip married Mark Twain’s daughter Clara Clemens, a singer who appeared with him in recital. 18-08-1910 Their only child, Nina, was born in Connecticut at Mark Twain’s home Stormfield. From 1910 to 1914, he was conductor of the Munich Konzertverein.

There was a pogrom in Munich in 1917, and as a result Gabrilowitsch was put in jail. Through the intervention of the papal nuncio to Bavaria, Archbishop Eugenio Pacelli (later Pope Pius XII), Gabrilowitsch was freed from jail, and then he headed to Zurich and America. He settled in the America, and in 1918 was appointed the founding director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, while maintaining his life as a concert pianist.

Before accepting the conductor’s position, he demanded a new auditorium be built, and this was the impetus for the building of  Orchestra Hall. Nina, the last known lineal descendent of Mark Twain, died January 19, 1966 in a Los Angeles hotel. She had been a heavy drinker, and bottles of pills and alcohol were found in her room.

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