Richard Hageman
Richard Hageman.jpg
Background information
Birth nameRichard Hageman
Born(1881-07-09)July 9, 1881
Leeuwarden, Friesland, Netherlands
DiedMarch 6, 1966(1966-03-06) (aged 84)
Beverly Hills, California, United States
Genres20th-century classical music Film scores
Occupation(s)Composer, Songwriter, Conductor, Pianist, Actor
Years active1899–1954

Richard Hageman (9 July 1881 – 6 March 1966) was a Dutch-born American conductor, pianist, composer, and actor.


Hageman was born and raised in Leeuwarden, Friesland, Netherlands. He was the son of Maurits Hageman of Zutphen, a violinist, pianist and conductor, and of Hester Westerhoven of Amsterdam, a singer who performed under the name Francisca Stoetz.[1] A child prodigy, he was a concert pianist by the age of six. He studied at the conservatories of Amsterdam and Brussels.[1] As a young man he was an accompanist for singers and with the Nederlandsche Opera, which he conducted for the first time in 1899. He became the artistic director briefly in 1903, the same year he married the soprano Rosina van Ophemert, who took the stage name Rosina van Dyke/van Dyck (Rosina van Dijk was the maiden name of her grandmother).[2][3] For a short time he was accompanist to Mathilde Marchesi in Paris.[4] He travelled to the United States in 1906 to accompany Yvette Guilbert on a national tour. He stayed and eventually became an American citizen in 1925.[5] Rosina sang at the Metropolitan Opera, but the couple had an acrimonious divorce in 1916.[6] His second and third wives were also singers—Renee Thornton and Eleanore Rogers.[7]

He was a conductor and pianist for the Metropolitan Opera between 1908 and 1922, and 1935-1936, coach of the opera department at the Curtis Institute from 1925 to 1930, and music director of the Chicago Civic Opera and the Ravinia Park Opera for seven years. Hageman also taught vocal and piano at the Chicago Musical College in the 1920s,[8] where one of his notable piano students was Ray Turner, who went on to play with the Paul Whiteman Orchestra, worked as the staff pianist at Paramount Studios for over 20 years, and was a popular recording and concert artist.

Hageman was a guest director of orchestras like the Chicago, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles symphony orchestras. He conducted the Philadelphia Orchestra summer concerts for four years, and from 1938-1943 he conducted at the Hollywood Bowl summer concerts.[9]

He is known to the film community for his work as an actor and film score composer, most notably for his work on several John Ford films in the late 1930s and after the war in the late 1940s. He shared an Academy Award for his score to Ford's 1939 western Stagecoach. He played minor roles in eleven movies, for example as opera conductor Carlo Santi in The Great Caruso. He became a member of ASCAP in 1950.[9]

Hageman also composed more serious vocal music. His 1931 opera Caponsacchi, first performed in Freiburg with the title Tragödie in Arezzo in 1932, was staged at the Metropolitan Opera in 1937[4] with Mario Chamlee in the title role.[10] His "concert drama" The Crucible was performed in Los Angeles in 1943.[11] While his large musical compositions are rarely heard today, a few of his art songs are well-known and highly regarded, especially "Do Not Go, My Love", a setting of a Rabindranath Tagore poem.

He was a National Patron of Delta Omicron, an international professional music fraternity.[12] He died, aged 84, in Beverly Hills.

Larger musical works and chamber music

Richard Hageman
Richard Hageman




Published songs

Film scores

Hageman is credited for the scores of about 20 films, and his compositions have been used in many additional films.[15]

Seven of the scores were for films directed by John Ford; Kathryn Marie Kalinak has written that Ford "got great work out of the people he worked with, and often those he was hardest on produced the best work of their careers. One of those was Richard Hageman, the Philadelphia Orchestra notwithstanding."[16]


  1. ^ a b Richard Hageman at
  2. ^ Wedding certificate of Hageman and Van Ophemert
  3. ^ Soldiers of the Queen - Rosina Van Dyck as Ortlinde
  4. ^ a b Miller and Meckna, Grove Music Online
  5. ^ De Villiers, N. and Walthaus, A. (2015) Making the Tailcoats Fit: The life and music of Richard Hageman. Leeuwarden, The Netherlands: Uitgeverij Wijdemeer
  6. ^ Richard Hageman and Rosina van Dyke Hageman divorce, in The Evening World (New York, New York), 10 Aug 1916, Page 2.
  7. ^ "Composer Hageman's Temperamentally Different Wives". San Francisco Examiner. 29 November 1936. p. 93.
  8. ^ "Richard Hageman at Chicago Musical College". Chicago Sunday Tribune. 16 September 1923. p. 80.
  9. ^ a b Anonymous (Hup234!). "Internet Movie Database Biography for Richard Hageman". Retrieved 20 January 2010.
  10. ^ Wlaschin, p. 155
  11. ^ Miller, New Grove Opera
  12. ^ Delta Omicron Archived 2016-03-03 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ Winett, Ralph (31 January 1937). "Richard Hageman on 'Caponsacchi'". Brooklyn Daily Eagle. p. 77.
  14. ^ The dedication reads: "Written for and dedicated to John McCormack"
  15. ^ Richard Hageman at IMDb
  16. ^ Kalinak, Kathryn Marie (2007). How the West Was Sung: Music in the Westerns of John Ford. University of California Press. p. 121. ISBN 9780520941076.