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United States Music

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Author Topic: United States Music  (Read 30485 times)
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« Reply #45 on: January 20, 2013, 12:02:29 am »

Music of John Vincent

1. Symphony in D (Original version)
Louisville Orchestra
Robert Whitney, conductor
LP Transfer-- LOU 57-2
From the collection of Karl Miller

Yes, - this is the same source as has been posted twice to UC.  I don't know how the transfer compares to the to other ones.

2-3:The Music of John Vincent –Radio Broadcast KPFA, August 6, 1973

From the Other Minds Radio Archive (Creative Commons 3.0, Non-Commercial, Attribution, No Derivative Works)
Interview with composer, revised Version of Symphony in D, Symphonic Poem after Descartes(1958), String Quartet #2(1967), “Benjamin Franklin Suite for String Orchestra and Glass Harmonica Obbligato” (1963, piano used in the recording)

This radio broadcast has a very lengthy interview with John Vincent 4 years before his death- you'll hear about the two versions of his symphony, reminiscences about Arnold Schoenberg and Eugene Ormandy, and more details on  all of the recordings in the broadcast.

Description of Radio Broadcast from Other Minds Radio Archive
Composer John Vincent (b. 1902, Birmingham, Alabama) is best known for his “Symphony in D” which was recorded and often played by Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra. His music is exuberant and joyful and makes for some fine listening in this program which also includes an interview recorded in Los Angeles. You will hear his “Symphony in D,” “Quartet No. 2 for Strings” (1967), “Symphonic Poem after Descartes” (1958), and the “Benjamin Franklin Suite for String Orchestra and Glass Harmonica Obbligato” (1963). The recording of the “Benjamin Franklin Suite” utilizes a piano in place of the glass harmonica.

Wikipedia bio
John Vincent (composer)

John Nathaniel Vincent, Jr (May 17, 1902 – January 21, 1977) was an American composer, conductor, and music educator.

He was born in Birmingham, Alabama, and studied at the New England Conservatory of Music under Frederick Converse and George Chadwick graduating with a diploma in 1927. He continued his studies at George Peabody College where he earned a bachelors and a masters degree followed by doctoral studies at Harvard University from 1933–1935. While at Harvard studying under Walter Piston he won the John Knowles Paine Traveling Fellowship for two years of study with Nadia Boulanger. After transferring to Cornell University he earned his PhD in 1942. Vincent was head of the music department at Western Kentucky University from 1937–1945 and Schoenberg’s successor as professor of composition at UCLA, a position he held from 1946–1969. He died in Santa Monica, California in 1977.

As a composer, Vincent's music is known for its rhythmic vitality and lyricism. Although his music is essentially classical in form it is distinctly individual. The free tonality of his work makes use of what he calls ‘paratonality’: the predominance of a diatonic element in a polytonal or atonal passage. Vincent wrote numerous orchestral works, chamber music pieces, art songs, and choral works. He also wrote one ballet, 3 Jacks (1942), a film score, Red Cross (1948), and an opera, Primeval Void (1969).

In 1951 his book The Diatonic Modes in Modern Music was published. He also conducted orchestras throughout the USA and South America, and he was a director of the Huntington Hartford Foundation from 1952–1965.

Biography by Barnes and Noble

A century after his birth, the reputation of John Vincent rests on two orchestral works: the "Symphony in D," written for and recorded by the Louisville Orchestra (1952, revised 1956), and "Symphonic Poem after Descartes," premiered and recorded in 1958 by Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra (who also made another recording of "Symphony in D"). A "Second Symphony" for piano and strings was arranged by Vincent a year before his death from a 1960 work called "Consort" for the same components "in a neo-Elizabethan style." Born the same year as Richard Rodgers and Stefan Wolpe, Vincent was a student at New England Conservatory, where his teachers from 1922 - 1927 included Frederick Converse and George Chadwick. Awarded a diploma, he earned his B.A. and M.A. at George Peabody College in Nashville in 1933, and for the next two years studied with Walter Piston at Harvard. The John Knowles Paine Traveling Scholarship enabled him to attend l'École Normale de Musique in Paris for two more years (1935 - 1937), where he also received private tuition from the school's doyenne, Nadia Boulanger. In 1942 he earned his Ph.D. from Cornell University. Vincent began a career of teaching after the NE Conservatory: first in public schools at El Paso, TX (1927 - 1930), then at George Peabody while studying there (1930 - 1933). In 1937 he became head of the music department at Western Kentucky State University, and in 1946 was appointed to the composition department at UCLA, where he succeeded Arnold Schoenberg as professor of composition, until his retirement in 1969. He also conducted in North and South America, and from 1952 to 1965 was a director of the Huntington Hartford Foundation. In 1942, Vincent wrote a ballet, "Three Jacks," that he revised for piano and strings in 1954 as "Jack Spratt," in turn revised as "Orchestral Suite from the Three Jacks," and reworked as "The House that Jack Built" in 1957 for speaker and orchestra. In 1948 he wrote the film score for Red Cross, and in 1954 incidental music for The Hallow'd Time. On a text by H.C. Reese (who provided words for "The House that Jack Built"), Vincent composed an "opera buffa" in 1969 called "Primeval Void." His vocal music otherwise was mostly choral. In addition to the symphonies cited and the "Symphonic Poem after Descartes," he wrote a very early "Folk Song Symphony" (1931) and symphonic poem called "Songs of the Chattahoochee." In 1959 he wrote "La Jolla Concerto" for chamber orchestra, revising it twice (in 1966 and 1973). A "Rondo Rhapsody" was premiered in May 1965, and in 1966 he added "Nude Descending Staircase" for strings (arranged in 1974 for xylophone with piano or string accompaniment), also "The Phoenix, Fabulous Bird," for the city of Phoenix, AZ. From 1925 until the end of his life Vincent produced a variety of chamber music. In 1951, he published The Diatonic Modes in Modern Music, cited by Nicolas Slonimsky as "valuable." Stylistically, his music was rooted in Classical forms, notable for rhythmic asymmetry and lyrical melodies (which is not to say memorable). He employed a vocabulary called "paratonality," based freely but not surprisingly on diatonicism -- widespread among composers of his generation, and the later one influenced by Hindemith's residency in the U.S. after 1940. He used some atonal elements, but preferred polytonality in the more complex works.
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All download links I have posted are for works, that, to  my knowledge, have never been commercially released in digital form.  Should you find I've been in error, please notify myself or an Administrator.  Please IM me if I've made any errors that require attention, as I may not read replies.

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