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United States Music


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jowcol
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« Reply #180 on: March 02, 2015, 09:37:47 pm »

Richard Danielpour: Symphony No. 2 "Visions"


From the collection of Karl Miller
[url]



Tenor and soprano unknown
San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
Cond. Charles Wourinen
[19 Dec 1986]


Composer's Program Note:

Symphony No. 2, Visions is a five-movement work. The text is from Dylan Thomas’s “Vision and Prayer,” a poem in two parts, each part consisting of six sections. The poems in the first half of the work were written and are printed in diamond shapes; each poem of the second part appears on the page in the form of an hourglass. I have used all the sections of the first part and the last section of the second part. The last poem serves as an epilogue to Thomas’s entire work and is used in a similar way in the last movement of this symphony – as a final point of arrival and reflection.

In the first half of his cycle, Thomas uses imaes of the life of Christ in birth (movements one and two), in suffering (movement three), and in death and resurrection (movement four). Thomas’s work is, however, not simply a poetic narrative of the life of Jesus as much as it documents a journey of the soul – the soul of the poet-mystic who undergoes his own transformation as he experiences an often fantastic and sometimes frightening vision.

In the last movement (“I turn the corner of prayer…”), an ultimate reaction and resolution occurs in the heart of the poet. Here he returns to the center of his soul to discover that the power of his vision has indeed transformed him. In short, Dylan Thomas’s “Vision and Prayer” is a journey from darkness to light, from unanswered questions to illumination. It was with this spiritual passage in mind that I conceived my Second Symphony, both dramatically and structurally.

In the first movement, the tenor rises out of a darkly orchestrated introduction to ask, “Who / Are You / Who is born / In the next room…” Images of darkness and solitude are evoked with the words “And the heart print of man / Bows no baptism / But dark alone….” The second movement is the shortest of the five. In this movement, the witness experiences an epiphany of sorts, which culminates with the words “And the winges wall is torn / by his torrid crown / And the dark thrown / From his loin / To bright / Light.” Here, as in all five movements, a substantial amount of purely orchestral music follows the final words sung by the voice, and provides an opportunity for reflection and development of the textual and musical ideas.

The appearance of the soprano in the third movement reflects a pivotal turn in the progress of the drama and also provides a coloristic contrast, highlighting the structural centerpiece of the symphony. This central movement is musically the most complex of all and it could be compared to the development section of a sonata movement. It also contains the most violent music in the work, as it expresses an inner confrontation on the part of the poet, who, in his awareness of Christ’s suffering, discovers his own pain (“For I was lost who am / Crying at the man drenched throne….”) A quote from the second movement of Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde is used here.

I have used two voices in this symphony as a projection of two sides of the same personality. The soprano voice symbolizes the physical and the temporal. She is a harbinger and symbol of death. Indeed, the last words given to the soprano in the fourth movement are “And the whole pain / Flows open / And I / Die.” The tenor, on the other hand, represents the soul and the will of the poet, and in the fourth movement he sings in an impassioned quasi recitative style that is clearly influenced by the violence and fury of the music in the third movement. What follows this furious chant-like introduction is a series of events that lead ultimately to the dramatic climax of the work: the joining of the soprano and the tenor voices, unaccompanied. But before this happens, music that harks back to the ideas and emotional environment of the first movement is heard. “Silent Night” is quoted in the oboe and solo horn, emerging as a by-product of the musical material. What follows is an evocation of the tenor’s opening lines in the first movement (“Who / Are you / Who is born / In the next room…”), rendered now by muted strings.

The last movement is the most orchestral (and least song-like) of the five and serves not only as a denouement to the fourth movement, but also as an epilogue to the entire symphony. Much of the musical material of the first three movements is brought back and transformed to achieve a sense of dramatic closure. The climax of the movement occurs at the words “I / Am found.” These are the only words in the entire text that I have repeated. They are reiterated to mirror both the personal sense of revelation as well as the subsequent need to share the new-found awareness. The coda of the last movement, quiet and intimate in character, uses both solo violin and cello as shadows of the voices in the drama.
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« Reply #181 on: March 06, 2015, 11:42:29 am »

Dear Jowcol,

Thank you so much for the recent Ross Lee Finney offerings. I've enjoyed collecting that composer's scores for many years and it's a real joy to be able to listen to many of the works for the first time.

Best,
Caos
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« Reply #182 on: March 06, 2015, 01:24:20 pm »

I would wish to join in the thanks to jowcol and to Karl Miller for the continuing flood of music made available to us here Smiley

The quality of the music is variable-as one would expect-but without the opportunity to actually hear the music one cannot make a judgment about that. Not all the music is to my own particular taste-but that is immaterial, there is something for all tastes amongst the music.

I am particularly pleased to be able to hear the Richard Danielpour Symphony No.2 for example.

And of course there has been a lot of music from other countries, including pieces by that extraordinarily fine French composer Charles Koechlin-for which much thanks also.
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« Reply #183 on: March 28, 2015, 02:31:41 am »

William Schuman: Symphony No.2 (improved recording)

Downloaded from the unsungcomposers Forum, I´ve got a very noisy recording of the 2nd Symphony of William Schuman. As an admirer of this composer, I treasure this very special recording (although the work has its weaknesses) because later this work was withdrawn by Schuman.

Days ago I sent a message to Bill Anderson, asking if he would accept processing the archive.
And he did a wonderful job!!
He cleaned up the noisy original (of 1938), improved the sound quality and corrected the pitch (comparing with a copy of the score from the Schuman family, held by our ubiquitous authority Karl Miller)

These are his own words:
“A trumpet tenor C is 523 Hz, but the trumpet in the beginning of the recording was around 560 Hz. So the recording pitch was about 6.5% too high!  I digitally slowed the file down by about that percentage, compared it to a "C" tone in my software...and it came extremely close”.

In the link there are two archives (FLAC, mp3) of the work and an excerpt from a paper of J. Steele about the work.
All the merit and honor for Bill, whom I am very grateful!
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« Reply #184 on: March 28, 2015, 04:45:09 pm »

We should be extremely grateful to Gabriel and Bill Anderson for this improved version of the Schuman Second! It is not likely that any of us will have an opportunity to hear the work performed again-Schuman withdrew it as we know.

We can now hear the work in much improved quality of sound and judge for ourselves Smiley
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« Reply #185 on: March 28, 2015, 06:58:25 pm »

If the score still exists, it might still be performed, as it is not without precedent for performers to ignore a composer's decision in this regard. In the case of Schuman, I doubt if there will be a rush though, given the general neglect of this important composer.

I seem to recall a story about the premiere of Schuman's 3rd - someone came up to him afterwards and said, "Boy, you must hate Roy Harris now!"
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« Reply #186 on: April 03, 2015, 04:33:33 pm »

I believe the actual story is that Koussevitzky had sensed that Schuman was strongly influenced by Harris in his early work, and after K. premiered Schuman's 3rd Symphony, he told the young composer: "Now you must learn to hate Harris!" It was K.s way of telling Schuman that he had to start developing his own voice. Which he most assuredly did! :-)
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« Reply #187 on: April 05, 2015, 10:28:02 am »

Interesting, that puts a different slant on it!
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« Reply #188 on: June 23, 2015, 01:30:12 pm »

Music of Vincent Persichetti

From the collection of Karl Miller
Quote

If I knew you very well, I would rather not be talking to you in words; I would rather talk to you in a piece I write.  All my relationships are more meaningful when it's through my music.
[/i]



Concertino for Piano and Orchestra
Likely performers
Composer,piano
Eastman-Rochester Symphony Orchestra
Howard Hanson Conductor
[22 October 1945]


Symphony No. 1 (Reading session)
Eastman-Rochester Symphony Orchestra
Howard Hanson Conductor
[28 October 1947]


Symphony No. 4
New York Philharmonic
James de Priest, Conductor
[21 April 1988]


Symphony No. 4
Philadelphia Orchestra
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor
[March 1976]


Concerto for English Horn and Strings
Thomas Stacey, English Horn
New York Philharmonic
Eric Leinsdorf, conductor
[17 November 1977]


Symphony No. 7 "Liturgical"
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra
Lukas Foss, Conductor
[25 September 1967]


Symphony No. 7 "Liturgical"
Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra
Izler Solomon, Conductor
[17 December 1960]


Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
1. Allegro Not Troppo
2. Andante Sostenuto
3. Allegro Vivace
Anthony de Bonaventura, Piano


The Pleiades
Gordon Mathie, Trumpet
Crane Chorus
Crane Symphony Orchestra
Composer. Conductor
[10 May 1968]


Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
Anthony de Bonaventura, Piano
Dartmouth Community Symphony Orchestra
Mario de Bonaventure, Conductor
First Performance
[2 August 1964]


Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
James Dick, piano
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Eugene Ormandy, Conductor
Date unknown


Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
James Dick, piano
Philadelphia Orchestra
Eugene Ormandy, conductor
[7 December, 1979]


Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
James Dick, piano
Houston Symphony Orchestra
C. William Harwood, conductor
[16 March, 1982]



also, some of his works for band from other sources....

Symphony No. 6 (Symphony for Band)
Hofstra University Wind Ensemble
Fall 2013


Masquerade for Band
Opus 82 Wind Band
Norwegian Wind Band Championships, 2013


Psalm for Band
Pageant

North Texas Wind Symphony


Divertimento for Band
USAF Heartland of America Band
Frederick Fennell conducting
Strauss Auditorium, 
University of Nebraska at Omaha
November 1992.






David Dubal and Vincent Persichetti  Radio Show
One in a series of radio programs titled "For the Love of Music,"
hosted by David Dubal on WNCN-FM, New York. Guest is composer Vincent Persichetti. Originally broadcast on June 3, 1984.

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« Reply #189 on: June 23, 2015, 01:32:09 pm »


More About Vincent Persichetti


Vincent Persichetti
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Vincent Ludwig Persichetti (June 6, 1915 – August 14, 1987) was an American composer, teacher, and pianist. An important musical educator and writer, Persichetti was a native of Philadelphia. He was known for his integration of various new ideas in musical composition into his own work and teaching, as well as for training many noted composers in composition at the Juilliard School.

His students at Juilliard included Philip Glass, Michael Jeffrey Shapiro, Kenneth Fuchs, Richard Danielpour, Robert Dennis, Peter Schickele, Lowell Liebermann, Robert Witt, Elena Ruehr, Randell Croley, William Schimmel, Leonardo Balada, and Leo Brouwer. He also taught composition to Joseph Willcox Jenkins and conductor James DePreist at the Philadelphia Conservatory.


Persichetti was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1915 and remained a resident of that city throughout his life. Though neither of his parents were musicians, his musical education began early. Persichetti enrolled in the Combs College of Music at the age of five, where he studied piano, organ, double bass and later music theory and composition with Russel King Miller, whom he considered a great influence.

He first performed his original works publicly at the age of 14. By the time he reached his teens, Persichetti was paying for his own education by accompanying and performing. He continued to do so throughout high school, adding church organist, orchestral player and radio staff pianist to his experience. In addition to developing his musical talents, the young Persichetti attended art school and remained an avid sculptor until his death. He attended Combs for his undergraduate education as well. After receiving a bachelor's degree in 1936, he was immediately offered a teaching position.

By the age of 20, Persichetti was simultaneously head of the theory and composition department at Combs, a conducting major with Fritz Reiner at the Curtis Institute, and a student of piano (with Olga Samaroff) and composition at the Philadelphia Conservatory. He earned a master's degree in 1941 and a doctorate in 1945 from the Conservatory, as well as a conducting diploma from Curtis. In 1941, while still a student, Persichetti headed the theory and composition department as well as the department of postgraduate study at Philadelphia Conservatory.

In 1947, William Schuman offered him a professorship at Juilliard. Persichetti's students included Einojuhani Rautavaara, Leonardo Balada, Steven Gellman, Peter Schickele (P.D.Q. Bach), Michael Jeffrey Shapiro, Larry Thomas Bell, Claire Polin, Toshi Ichiyanagi, Robert Witt (who also studied with Persichetti at the Philadelphia Conservatory) and Philip Glass. He became Editorial Director of the Elkan-Vogel publishing house in 1952.

Persichetti is one of the major figures in American music of the 20th century, both as a teacher and a composer. Notably, his Hymns and Responses for the Church Year has become a standard setting for church choirs. His numerous compositions for wind ensemble are often introductions to contemporary music for high school and college students. His early style was marked by the influences of Stravinsky, Bartók, Hindemith, and Copland before he developed his distinct voice in the 1950s.

Persichetti's music draws on a wide variety of thought in 20th-century contemporary composition as well as Big Band music. His own style was marked by use of two elements he refers to as "graceful" and "gritty": the former being more lyrical and melodic, the latter being sharp and intensely rhythmic. He frequently used polytonality and pandiatonicism in his writing, and his music could be marked by sharp rhythmic interjections, but his embracing of diverse strands of musical thought makes characterizing his body of work difficult. This trend continued throughout his compositional career. His music lacked sharp changes in style over time. (Persichetti once said in an interview in Musical Quarterly that his music was "...not like a woman, that is, it does not have periods!").[this quote needs a citation] He frequently composed while driving in his car, sometimes taping staff paper to the steering wheel.

His piano music forms the bulk of his creative output, with a concerto, a concertino, twelve sonatas, and a variety of other pieces written for the instrument. These were virtuosic pieces as well as pedagogical and amateur-level compositions. Persichetti was an accomplished pianist. He wrote many pieces suitable for less mature performers, considering them to have serious artistic merit.

Persichetti is also one of the major composers for the concert wind band repertoire, with his 14 works for the ensemble. The Symphony No. 6 for band is of particular note as a standard larger work. He wrote one opera, entitled The Sibyl. The music was noted by critics for its color, but the dramatic and vocal aspects of the work were found by some to be lacking.

He wrote nine symphonies, of which the first two were withdrawn (as were the first two symphonies by two other American composers of the late thirties and early forties, William Schuman and Peter Mennin), and four string quartets.

Many of his other works are organized into series. One of these, a collection of primarily instrumental works entitled Parables, contains 25 works, many for unaccompanied wind instruments (complete listing below). His 15 Serenades include such unconventional combinations as a trio for trombone, viola, and cello, as well as selections for orchestra, for band, and for duo piano.

Persichetti frequently appeared as a lecturer on college campuses, for which he was noted for his witty and engaging manner. He wrote the noted music theory textbook, Twentieth Century Harmony: Creative Aspects and Practice, which informed readers such as Robert Fripp.[1] He and Flora Rheta Schreiber wrote a monograph on William Schuman.


Also please check out the Bruce Duffie interview with Persichetti at: 
http://www.bruceduffie.com/persichetti.html

Also included in the download is a copy of John Christie's thesis providing a Strucutural Analysis of Persichetti's Symphony 6 ( for Band)

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« Reply #190 on: June 23, 2015, 04:11:16 pm »

Thank you Smiley

Particularly interesting to get the withdrawn Symphony No.1 and the Cantata "The Pleiades".
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« Reply #191 on: June 25, 2015, 12:57:31 pm »

Music of John Haussermann


From the collection of Karl Miller


The After Christmas Suite (1934)
Manilla Symphony Orchestra
Dr. Herbert Zipper, conductor


Symphony No 2 Op. 6 (1937-8)
( Movements 3 and 4  only)
NBC Symphony Orchestra
William Steinberg, Conductor
[28 May, 1939]


Symphony No. 3(1947)
Cincinatti Symphony Orchestra
Thor Johnson, conductor
[1 April 1949]


Pastoral Fantasy for Flute, Harp and String Orch. Op 5a (1939)
Anna Sacchi, harp;
Murray Graitzer flute;
Phil Sims String Orchestra
Jettie J. Denmark, conductor
[16 April 1939]



Concerto for Voice and Orchestra, Op. 25 (1942)
Margo Rehert (sp?) soprano,
Cincinnatti Symphony Orchestra
Sir Eugene Goossens, conductor
[24 April 1942]


From another source....

Morning Concert: The Music of John Haussermann
Radio Show
KPFA-FM
July 2, 1980
From the Other Minds Archive

About the composer from Archive.Org

One of the most unusual and inspiring stories in modern American music is that of composer John Haussermann. Born in 1909, to a wealthy family then living in Manila, Haussermann studied music at the Cincinnati Conservatory (1924–27) and at Colorado College, before going to Paris in 1930 to study organ with Marcel Dupré. While in Paris he became friends with Maurice Ravel and began serious study of composition with Paul Le Flem. Active in the Cincinnati area from the 1930s to the 1950s, he was the founder of the Contemporary Concert series in Cincinnati. In 1967 he moved to San Francisco where he was to reside until his death in 1986. An encouraging example to many others who live with a physical disability, Haussermann was born with cerebral palsy and was later confined to a wheelchair after being in a car accident, and yet he composed for decades in all media from chamber music to orchestral with the aid of a music secretary. In this program you will here some rare early recordings of his music, including the world premiere of perhaps his most famous composition the “Concerto for Voice and Orchestra, Op. 25”.


Note: There was a radio show in 1981 as part of the Disability Radio Arts Project.  Currently, its stored on reel to reel, but not available digitally.  If anyone wishes to pay the cost of a transfer, they will make it digitally--

http://www.pacificaradioarchives.org/recording/az0591





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« Reply #192 on: August 26, 2015, 08:10:21 pm »

[size=24]Music of Irving Fine[/size]



From the collection of Karl Miller


Symphony (1962)
New York Philharmonic
Leonard Bernstein, Conductor
October 27/31, 1966


From other public sources...

Toccata Concertante (1947)
Serious Song, Lament for String Orchestra (1955)
Boston Symphony Orchestra diretta da Erich Leinsdorf

Bio from the Irving Fine Society

Irving Fine (1914-1962) was an American composer with a remarkable gift for lyricism, whose masterfully crafted scores inevitably "sing." Aaron Copland wrote that his music "wins us over through its keenly conceived sonorities and its fully realized expressive content," praising it for "elegance, style, finish and a convincing continuity." Virgil Thomson cited an "unusual melodic grace."

Fine's initial training was in piano and he became a skilled pianist, admired by colleagues for his superior sightreading ability. Composition and theory studies were with Walter Piston and Edward Burlingame Hill at Harvard University, and with Nadia Boulanger in France and at Radcliffe College, Cambridge, Massachusetts. In addition, Fine studied choral conducting with Archibald T. Davison at Harvard and orchestral conducting with Serge Koussevitzky, at Tanglewood. At Harvard, where he became a close associate of Copland, Stravinsky, Koussevitzky and Leonard Bernstein, he taught theory and music history from 1939 to 1950; and at Brandeis University he taught composition and theory from 1950 to 1962. Fine also conducted the Harvard Glee Club, and for nine summers between 1946 and 1957 taught composition at the Berkshire Music Center at Tanglewood. At Brandeis he was Walter W. Naumburg Professor of Music and chairman of the School of Creative Arts. He suffered a fatal heart attack in Boston on August 23, 1962, leaving incomplete Maggie (based on the Stephen Crane novel), a musical he was writing in collaboration with composer Richard Wernick; he had also begun a violin concerto, commissioned by the Ford Foundation. Among Fine's honors were two Guggenheim Fellowships, a Fulbright Research Fellowship, a National Institute of Arts and Letters award, and a New York Music Critics' Circle award.

An examination of Fine's small but estimable output reveals a composer who was a perfectionist on the order of Copland and Stravinsky. His works are carefully calculated and detailed, their ever-increasing emphasis on melody tellingly allied with rhythmic suppleness, clean-sounding textures, and unobtrusive but integral counterpoint.

As an artist Fine was eclectic, but in the best sense: assimilative yet individual. The influence of neoclassical Stravinsky and eighteenth-century forms is pervasive in much of his early music, along with what proved to be a lifelong attachment to romantic expression. The 1946 Sonata for Violin and Piano was accurately described by the composer as being in an idiom "essentially tonal, diatonic, moderately dissonant, neoclassic in its formal approach." Fine's neoclassicism, nurtured early on by Nadia Boulanger, is apparent even in the movement-titles of pieces such as the 1947 Music for Piano and the 1948 Partita for Wind Quintet (for instance, "Variations," "Gigue," "Waltz-Gavotte"). However, the ebulliently rhythmic Toccata Concertante for Orchestra of 1947 — which has, wrote the composer, "a certain affinity with the energetic music of the Baroque concertos" — stands as the most full-blown example of neoclassic Fine.

Subsequently, romanticism claimed pride of place, and in the elegantly bittersweet Notturno for Strings and Harp (1951), the harmonically diverse song-cycle Mutability (1952), and the austerely elegiac Serious Song: Lament for String Orchestra (1955) the result was a more intense lyricism. With such works he proved himself capable of writing melody which, as he once noted admiringly of another composer, "gives real pleasure to lots of people without being commonplace." It is not surprising that Notturno and Serious Song are the most frequently played of Fine's orchestral compositions. (Also programmed often are his highly idiomatic, unfailingly lyric and varied choral works —Alice in Wonderland, The Hour-Glass, The Choral New Yorker.)

The final development in Fine's aesthetic was his utilization of twelve-tone technique, initially in the eloquent, intense String Quartet of 1952, then in the pellucid Fantasia for String Trio of 1956, culminating in what was to be his last work, the dramatic Symphony of 1962. His interest in serialism had been stimulated by the example of Stravinsky and Copland, and like his elder colleagues he was able to use dodecaphonic method freely and subordinate it to his personal musical ideals. Fine's serially inflected scores have tonal centers, and also the formal and textural clarity, the sense of control, and the rhythmic potency of his earlier pieces. Copland described the symphony, the composer's most ambitious work, as being "almost operatic in gesture," and its urgent rhythmic polyphony, declamatory rhetoric and considerable dissonance quotient marked a new plateau in Fine's creative evolution — one that must forever intrigue as both a beginning and an end.

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« Reply #193 on: August 28, 2015, 09:20:25 pm »

For what its worth, I've just posted a handful of works by different American composers from the bottomless archive of Karl Miller.  Enjoy-- and let me know if I've screwed something up.
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« Reply #194 on: September 30, 2015, 10:15:13 pm »

Robert Hall Lewis

Symphony No 2 (1970-1971)

London Symphony Orchestra, composer

I cannot find a work list, but he wrote at least four symphonies. As far as I am aware, this recording (from an old CRI LP) is not commercially available on CD, but correct me if I'm wrong.

-----

Some bio, cribbed from elsewhere on the net:

b Portland, OR, 22 April 1926; d Baltimore, MD, 22 March 1996. He studied with Rogers and Hanson at the Eastman School of Music, Rochester, New York (BM 1949, MM 1951, PhD 1964), with Nadia Boulanger and Bigot in Paris (1952–3), and with Apostel, Krenek and Schiske in Vienna (1955–7). In 1954 he attended Monteux’s conducting school. Lewis taught at Goucher College and the Peabody Conservatory from 1958 and, from 1969 to 1980, at Johns Hopkins University, where he became professor in 1972 (all in Baltimore, Maryland).

Lewis composed mostly chamber and orchestral music. His earlier compositions were concerned with linear developmental processes using serial methods, but the ordered growth and evolution apparent in his music of the 1960s and 70s reflect a change in style. Beyond his basic predilection for inventive textures, unusual timbres, complex rhythms, fluent polyphony and rich harmony in a freely atonal context, Lewis sought new modes of expression in works since the early 1970s.

Lewis said that he adhered "to no particular school or system of composition" and that he considered himself to be an "independent maximalist." Lewis claimed that "it is very important that a composition have an original, distinctive character and an identity of its own, devoid of the obvious, derivative tendencies and commercial influences that surround us in much music today." His intent, he said, was to create a music of genuine interest to the listener, alternately surprising, provoking, soothing, stimulating and hopefully inspiring.

Lewis received many honours and awards, among them a Kosciuszko Foundation Chopin Scholarship, two Fulbright scholarships, two Guggenheim Fellowships, the Walter Hinrichsen Award for Composers, an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, several fellowship-grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, and a Maryland State Artist Fellowship Award. He also won ASCAP awards annually for nearly 30 years, beginning in 1969. He served as composer-in-residence at the American Academy in Rome and scholar-in-residence at the Rockefeller Foundation Study Centre in Italy.
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