The Blanton Museum of Art
"...The name "Aaron Copland" conjures misty Appalachian valleys and broad Midwestern prairies, but this composer whose music is so identified with the American heartland was also deeply inspired by our neighbor to the south, and, in fact, his first major success was with a work based on its music. El Salón México – named for a raucous dance hall that Copland visited with his fellow composer and friend Carlos Chávez – includes themes drawn from a handful of Mexican folk tunes that Copland found in published anthologies, and so captivated audiences that within a couple of years of its 1937 premiere by the Orquesta Sinfónica de Mexico (with Chávez conducting), the piece had been performed by 21 orchestras – more than any of Copland's other works to that date...."
"...The astonishing thing about this journey through the eastern United States besides the fact that you can make it in less than two hours without ever leaving your chair is that you're seeing all those landscapes with your ear. George Gershwin, Aaron Copland, and Austin composer Donald Grantham have managed to evoke the distinctive characters of New York City, Appalachia, and the South, respectively, through music, using tools of their trade melody, rhythm, tempo, harmonics, and the like essentially to "map" these parts of our country...."
"...Austin Symphony Orchestra: Copland and MexicoDell Hall at the Long Center, 701 W. Riverside, March 21..."
"..."Ascendant (sextet in memory of Aaron Copland)," Lingo..."
"...Sigh, America – what can our country's artists tell us about ourselves? Spectrum Dance Theater, based in Seattle and headed by revered contemporary choreographer Donald Byrd, joined the top-notch New York-based Aeolus Quartet at the University of Texas for two performances of Byrd's dances to music by American composers. The dances were as varied as the music by Charles Ives, Aaron Copland, Vincent Persichetti, Charles Wuorinen, and Yevgeniy Sharlat..."
"...Conducted playfully by the Longhorn Band's Robert Carnochan, this new work by Austin's Donald Grantham whirled us into a splashy world of reckless abandon, the frisky brass in the lead, flirtatiously bouncing hither and yon. Sobriety returned with Aaron Copland's Emblems, a work from 1964 and full of long, dissonant chords like storm clouds over the heartland..."
"...The premiere of Deemer's "Hot, Crazy, Fun," a chamber music ode to Austin, followed. Pianist Reuben Allred and Tosca String Quartet members Leigh Mahoney, Tracy Seeger, Ames Asbell, and Sara Nelson opened with the first of the night's references to Aaron Copland and quickly moved to an energetic, jazzy section that matched the intoxicating spirit of the previous dance..."
"...Elizabeth Crist, assistant professor of Musicology at UT-Austin, is one of nine writers and editors and their publishers to be honored by the American Society of Composers, Authors & Publishers in the 37th annual ASCAP-Deems Taylor Awards for outstanding print, broadcast, and new media coverage of music. Crist was recognized for her article "Aaron Copland and the Popular Front," published in the Journal of the American Musicological Society..."
"..."In other words, scores which don't just Mickey Mouse what's on the screen. The Aaron Copland scores are very much like that..."
"...This week, the venerable choral organization is hosting a three-day symposium in which there will be sung many strains divine, all with lyrics by the Belle of Amherst herself. The Emily Dickinson Song Symposium is a conference dedicated to art songs featuring texts by the master American poet, and what a fertile field it is! In the last century, more than 100 composers have been inspired to score Dickinson's poetry, everyone from old hands such as Samuel Barber and Aaron Copland -- whose 12 Songs by Emily Dickinson is perhaps the most celebrated example in the field -- to newer folks like Dead Man Walking composer Jake Heggie and Austin's own Donald Grantham..."
"...Symphony No. 4, written in 1940, carries some of the weight of the Depression on its shoulders, but also boasts some of the muscle of that period's regionalism, especially as heard in Aaron Copland's music..."
"...(Examples of his precise instructions, scribbled in red on contact sheets throughout the exhibit, are fascinating and telling.) But it also uses HRC archival material to turn viewers into learners. Beside his portrait of the composer Aaron Copland is Newman's contact sheet with three other, near-identical Copland poses..."
"...On the list of gay and lesbian composers whose music is celebrated in the Austin Chamber Music Festival's annual Pride Concert, figures from the 20th and 21st centuries predominate – which isn't surprising considering how recently Western culture has begun to remove the stigma around sexual orientation. But when this year's program is performed on July 17, among the remarkable modern music makers such as Aaron Copland, Virgil Thomson, Ben Weber, Julius Eastman, and Thomas Otis will be a surprising cameo: 17th century composer George Frideric Handel...."
"...Among the other musicians taking part will be pianists Gregory Allen, Rick Rowley, Carla McElhaney, and Jeanne Sasaki; singers Claire Vangelisti, Amber Alarcon, Gil Zilkha, Shaunna Shandro, and Nicole Taylor. The UT Chamber Singers will perform "My Love Is Like a Red Red Rose," and the Texas Choral Consort, led by Artistic Director Brent Baldwin, will close the service with "Down to the River to Pray," "Draw the Circle Wide," and Aaron Copland's setting of "At the River," with all the service participants joining in song..."
"...AC: When you started to study music, were you influenced by what was going on at that time in the field – the push and pull of serialism and atonal music or the legacy of composers like Roy Harris and Aaron Copland?..."
"...AC: There's something so, for lack of a better word, American sounding in your music. Were you mainlining Stephen Foster and Aaron Copland and George Gershwin when you were a kid? It seems to be in your bloodstream...."
"...First up are UT's Chamber Singers, a choir with a strong grounding in the material, having already recorded one CD of American choral music for the Naxos label and set to record a second in May. Their program which commemorates the 50th anniversary of the ensemble's founding will range from folk songs arranged by Aaron Copland, George Mead, and Mark Wilberg to Lukas Foss' Psalms and Vincent Persichetti's Mass to Irving Fine's The Hour-Glass, William Bolcom's The Mask, and the Walt Whitman-inspired Carols of Death, by William Schuman..."
"...What I'm getting at here is: What makes an American song American? What's the sound that belongs uniquely to our country? Is it something found only in musical forms that were planted and sprouted here, like, say, spirituals, ragtime, jazz, soul, rock & roll? What about certain composers and songwriters whose work seems ineffably to capture in melody the land of the free and home of the brave? I'm thinking of folks such as Aaron Copland, John Philip Sousa, Woody Guthrie, Scott Joplin...."
"...Austin didn't do much to mark the recent centenaries of Kurt Weill, Aaron Copland, Richard Rodgers, or William Walton, and it looks as if we'll let the 100-year birth anniversaries of Marc Blitzstein and Harold Arlen in 2005 pass without fanfare, but we've got Shostakovich covered! The Russian composer passes the century mark in 2006, and a full 15 area arts organizations are working together to commemorate the occasion with performances, lectures, symposiums, perspectives, and art exhibitions. Austin Lyric Opera Artistic Director Richard Buckley is at the head of this effort, which has already been a year in the planning, and his company will launch the festivities officially known as Shostakovich 100: Austin Celebrates with a staging of the composer's Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Jan..."
"...Using as a springboard Dvorák's brilliantly fruitful visit to our country from 1892 to 1894, during which he served as director of the New York National Conservatory of Music and composed some of his finest work, the festival will examine how Dvorák's efforts to teach our nation's young composers how to find the true American musical voice fit in the late 19th-century search for an American identity. It was a search that anticipated the more familiar American music of Aaron Copland, George Gershwin, Roy Harris, and others decades later, as well as the development of one of our greatest and most truly American art forms: jazz (and its happy, scraggly stepchildren, rock and R&B)...."