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Gilbert, Henry Franklin Belknap (26 September 1868–19 May 1928), composer, essayist, and musician, was born in Somerville, Massachusetts, the son of Benjamin Franklin Gilbert, a bank clerk and musician, and Therese Angeline Gilson, a noted soprano. At the age of ten, inspired by the playing of ...

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Willson, Meredith (18 May 1902–15 June 1984), lyricist/composer, conductor, and flutist, was born Robert Reiniger Meredith Willson in Mason City, Iowa, the son of John D. Willson, a lawyer and businessman, and Rosalie Reiniger, a teacher. Both of Willson’s grandfathers were considered early settlers by more recent immigrants, adding to the family’s local prominence. Meredith appeared in his mother’s Sunday school musicals as early as the age of four and at twelve sang a solo as Don (“a shepherd”) in the local production of his sister Dixie’s musical, ...