Whose Birthday is Today?


See performers and composers from Carnegie Hall’s performance history who were born on this day. Click on each name to view information on that person from our online Performance History Search, and view matching items in Wikidata.

read lab report return to experiments

Birth Year Name with PHS Link Birth Place Matching Wikidata Item
1671 Teodorico Pedrini born in Fermo Wikidata Item
1722 Georg Benda born in Staré Benátky Wikidata Item
1845 Italo Campanini born in Parma Wikidata Item
1858 Robert Browne Hall born in Bowdoinham Wikidata Item
1882 Adolphe Borchard born in Le Havre Wikidata Item
1886 Launy Grøndahl born in Copenhagen Wikidata Item
1892 László Lajtha born in Budapest Wikidata Item
1900 Arthur T. Cremin born in New York City No Wikidata Item
1906 Ralph Magelssen born in Minneapolis No Wikidata Item
1909 Paul Constantinescu born in Ploiești Wikidata Item
1914 Natko Devcic born in Glina Wikidata Item
1916 Joyce Rawlings born in Blackburn No Wikidata Item
1917 Lena Horne born in Brooklyn Wikidata Item
1922 Zolton Ferency born in Detroit Wikidata Item
1925 Will Gay Bottje born in Grand Rapids Wikidata Item
1928 Harold Zabrack born in St. Louis No Wikidata Item
1930 Nikolai Karetnikov born in Moscow Wikidata Item
1932 Martin Mailman born in New York City Wikidata Item
1935 Loretta Ellenberger born in Wiley No Wikidata Item
1936 Dave Van Ronk born in Brooklyn Wikidata Item
1936 Pauls Dambis born in Riga No Wikidata Item
1937 Michael von Biel born in Hamburg Wikidata Item
1941 Micki Grant born in Chicago Wikidata Item
1941 Paul Alan Levi born in New York City Wikidata Item
1941 Larry Henley born in Arp Wikidata Item
1946 Giles Swayne born in England No Wikidata Item
1949 Barrie Lee Hall Jr. born in Mansfield No Wikidata Item
1949 Christopher Berg born in United States of America No Wikidata Item
1950 Kinley Lange born in Burnet No Wikidata Item
1951 Stanley Clarke born in Philadelphia Wikidata Item
1956 David Alan Grier born in Detroit Wikidata Item
1956 Ronald Winans born in Detroit No Wikidata Item
1958 Esa-Pekka Salonen born in Helsinki Wikidata Item
1971 Stefan Schulz born in Berlin No Wikidata Item
1973 Brooke Joyce born in East Lansing No Wikidata Item
1974 Michael Christie born in New York City Wikidata Item
1985 Rafal Blechacz born in Nakło nad Notecią Wikidata Item
1988 Mijail Tumanov born in Ukraine No Wikidata Item
1995 Tyrone Allen born in United States of America Wikidata Item

lab report


List: Whose Birthday is Today?


See which composers and performers from Carnegie Hall’s performance history were born on this day, with their birth year, birthplace, and a link to their corresponding Wikidata item.

The scope is limited to those people for whom we have birthdate and birthplace information.


We created a SPARQL query using data.carnegiehall.org, which finds people from Carnegie Hall's performance history (e.g. performers, and/or creators like composers, arrangers, lyricists, etc.) born on today's date. Since birthdates have been stored as ISO-8601 dates assigned datatypes like xsd:date (YYYY-MM-DD), xsd:gYearMonth (YYYY-MM), or xsd:gYear (YYYY), we can use SPARQL's FILTER to find only those people born on today's month and day. Birthplaces are identified using GeoNames URIs (when the birth city is not known, birth country will be used; people with no birthplace recorded will not appear in the query). The query will also return the Wikidata item ID for anyone whose Carnegie Hall ID has been aligned with Wikidata using the skos:exactMatch property.

              PREFIX rdfs: <http://www.w3.org/2000/01/rdf-schema#>
              PREFIX schema: <http://schema.org/##>
              PREFIX foaf: <http://xmlns.com/foaf/0.1/##>
              PREFIX geo-pos: <http://www.w3.org/2003/01/geo/wgs84_pos##>
              PREFIX skos: <http://www.w3.org/2004/02/skos/core##>
              SELECT ?personName ?birthPlace ?birthPlaceLabel ?lat ?long ?opasID ?wikidataLink (YEAR(?date) as ?year)
                            (STR(ENCODE_FOR_URI(?personName))))) AS ?perfLink)
                            (STR(ENCODE_FOR_URI(?personName))))) AS ?compLink)
                  BIND(MONTH(NOW()) AS ?nowMonth)
                  BIND(DAY(NOW()) AS ?nowDay)

                  ?personID schema:birthDate ?date ;
                          foaf:name ?personName ;
                          schema:birthPlace ?birthPlace .
                  ?birthPlace rdfs:label ?birthPlaceLabel ;
                              geo-pos:lat ?lat ;
                              geo-pos:long ?long .
                  OPTIONAL { ?personID skos:exactMatch ?wikidataLink .
                      filter contains(str(?wikidataLink), "wikidata")}
                  BIND(REPLACE(str(?personID), "http://data.carnegiehall.org/names/", "") as ?opasID)
                  FILTER (MONTH(?date) = ?nowMonth && DAY(?date) = ?nowDay)

              ORDER BY ?year
              LIMIT 100

In order to provide an easily human-readable version of each person’s history at the hall, we also use SPARQL to create a link to Performance History Search, an HTML presentation of essentially the same dataset that we published first in 2013 (and predates our experiments with LOD). (In the query, this is found right after the SELECT statement, where you'll see (IRI(CONCAT( etc.)


what we learned

You might be asking why we need to formulate different versions of the PHS link. The HTML version launched in 2013, well prior to our release of the same data as RDF in 2017; although the source database is the same, the process that translates the data for display is a bit different and was developed separately. This creates a few challenges when attempting to create links to PHS search filters:

  • Our source database for CH’s performance history data, a proprietary SQL-based product designed for concert planning, stores performers and composers in separate tables. When the data is surfaced in the HTML Performance History Search (PHS), that separation between composers and performers remains. Query filters are constructed from a search index based on the name string of the composer or performer.
  • Our RDF version of the data solves this problem of (potential) dual IDs by creating a single ID for each named entity, with statements defining their role according to associations with creative works (as a composer, arranger, lyricist, etc.) and/or events (as a performer).
  • In order to construct the PHS link, a URL-safe version of the Wikidata item label (i.e. the name of the composer or performer, with URL-encoded characters replacing spaces and other reserved characters) must be concatenated with a base URL, e.g. https://www.carnegiehall.org/About/History/Performance-History-Search?q=&dex=prod_PHS&pf=Juan%20Tizol.

further investigation

Eventually our goal is to bring all online historical content — our performance history and digital collections — into a single, unified user experience using our LOD as the metadata "backbone". The Carnegie Hall Data Lab is a first step in that direction, where we can begin experimenting with user-friendly ways to surface our performance history data.

return to experiments