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EXEMPLARS – text

A MORE COMPREHENSIVE LIST (18th century – contemporary):
 

Scientists who compose(d) music:
Joseph Auenbrugger (1722–1809) – Physician
Theodor Billroth (1829–1894) – Surgeon
Richard Bing (1909 – 2010) – Cardiologist
Carlo Botteghi (1938-2002) – Industrial Chemist
John Conrad Hemmeter (1863–1931) – Physiologist
Elie Gagnebin (1891–1949) – Geologist
Morris Kates (1923 -) Biochemist
Hilary Koprowski (1916 – ) – Virologist/Immunologist
B.G.E. Lacepede (1756–1825) – Zoologist
Alexius Meinong (1853–1920) – Experimental Psychologist
Albert Michelson (1852–1931) – Physicist
Arthur Roberts (1912 – 2004) – Physicist
Ronald Ross (1857–1932) – Epidemiologist
Bela Schick (1877–1967) – Pediatrician
Walter Thirring (1927 – ) – Physicist
Georges Urbain (1872–1938) – Inorganic Chemist
Emile Votocek (1872–1950) – Chemist

Composers with science backgrounds
George Antheil (1900–1959) – Endocrinologist and Inventor
M.A. Balakirev (1837–1910) – Mathematician
George Berg (~1720-1775) – Chemist
Hector Berlioz (1803–1869) – Physician
Edward Elgar (1857–1934) – Chemist
Lejaren Hiller (1924-1994) – Chemist
Charles Ives )1874-1954) – Actuary
Camille Saint-Saens (1835–1921) – Astronomy
Joseph Schillinger (1895–1943) – Mathematician
Iannis Xenakis (1922 – 2001) Mathematician and Engineer

Known as both Musicians and Scientists
Elaine L. Bearer*** (1949- ) – Biochemist/Composer
Alexander Borodin (1833-1877) – Organic Chemist/Composer
Diana S. Dabby (contemporary) – Mathematician/Electrical Engineer/Concert Pianist
Caroline Hershcel (1750-1848) – Astronomer/Opera Singer/Harpsichordist
William Herschel (1738-1822) – Astronomer/Composer/Violinist

Scientists who played musical instruments and/or performed music in public:
Alexander Borodin (1833-1877) – Organic Chemist/Composer
Walter Cannon (1871-1945) – Physiologist (NAS)
Ernst Chain (1906-1979) – Biochemist (NP)
Diana S. Dabby (contemporary) – Mathematician/Electrical Engineer
Gerald Edelman (1929- ) – Molecular Biologist (NP)
Manfred Eigen (1927 – ) – Chemist (NP)
Albert Einstein (1879-1955) – Physicist (NP)
Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) – Scientist/Inventor (also composed music)
Stephen Jay Gould (1841-2002) – Biologist/Paleontologist (NAS)
Werner Heisenberg (1901-1976) – Quantum Physicist – (NP)
Caroline Hershcel (1750-1848) – Astronomer/Opera Singer/Harpsichordist
William Herschel (1738-1822) – Astronomer/Composer/Violinist
Martin Kamen (1913-2002) – Physicist(NAS)
Ada Byron Lovelace (1815-1852) – Mathematician
Jacques Monod (1910-1976) – Molecular Biologist (NP)
Wilhelm Ostwald (1853-1932) – Chemist (NP)
Max Planck (1858-1947) – Physicist (NP)
Edmund Wilson (1856-1939) – Zoologist/Geneticist (NAS)
NP=Nobel Prize; NAS=National Academy of Sciences

Performing artists with science degrees:
Ernest Ansermet (1883–1969), Conductor/Composer – Mathematician
Barbara Hendricks (1948- ), Soprano – Chemistry/Mathematics
Jeremy Denk (1970- ), Pianist – Chemistry
Jonathan Miller (1934- ), Opera Director – Medicine
Giuseppe Sinopoli (1946-2001), Conductor – Medicine

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Sources:
Robert S. Root-Bernstein, etal, “Arts Foster Scientific Success“; Journal of Psychology of Science and Technology, Volume 1, No. 2, 2008; Springer Publishing Company.Robert S. Root-Bernstein, “Music, Creativity and Scientific Thinking“; Leonardo, Vol. 34, No. 1, pp. 63–68, 2001

Leopold May, The Lesser Known Chemist-Composers, past and present; Bull. Hist. Chem., Volume 33, Number 1 (2008)

Chemists Can Do Anything! http://www.balbes.com/Careers/majors.html

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These lists are most likely incomplete. If you know of any names that we missed, let us know and let’s grow the database together.

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