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About Ivar Henningsson Mankell
Ivar Henning (known as Henning) was a well-known pianist, music teacher, music critic and composer and a member of the Royal Academy of Music. Ivar Henning was a music student at the Stockholm Music Conservatory. He studied music with Hilda Thegerström and studied piano with Lennart Lundberg. He was a music critic for the Svenske Morgonbladet and the Stockholms-Tidningen. In the late 1880s Ivar Henning and his two brothers, Emil and Gustaf, formed a piano trio. In addition to performing and teaching piano, Ivar Henning was was an amateur violinist, a poet, and a writer, and artist. In 1893 he wrote a short story “A Life” which is about the struggles of an artist. He drew sketches and painted from his travels in Sweden and Europe. Ivar Henning was best known as a composer for solo piano, chamber orchestra, instrumental, and vocal music. His style was thought to be independent and advanced for its time. His music is described as poetic, impressionistic, and full of fantasy, influenced by Debussy, Grieg, and Liszt His work focused on technical and stylistic aspects rather than the more popular romantic style. In 1917 he was elected into the Swedish Royal Academy of Music. The Svenska Biografiskt Lexikon describes Henning as a “lonely, shy person who avoided society, being more comfortable alone with his piano or in nature.”
In 1905 Ivar Henning married Agnes Karolina Lindblom and had three children (Ivar Henningsson, Sigrid, and Birgit). Ivar Henningsson's son, Henning Georg Mankell (1948-) is a world famous author.
On October 10, 1928 composer and pianist Henning Mankell (grandfather of author Henning Mankell) wrote from Stockholm to Hulda Mankell Melgaard in Minnesota, primarily about his music. Henning mentions the death "Gustaf" which probably refers to his cousin Gustaf, son of Johan August. Gustaf, a businessman, died in 1928 in Gothenburg. The "August" mentioned in the letter would have been Gustaf's brother. Henning and Hulda both were about 60 years old at the time of this letter. Henning was the son of Emil Theodore and Hulda was the granddaughter of Emil's brother, Wilhelm August.
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