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Byron Adams


(b Cleveland, Aug 28, 1959). American composer, conductor, baritone, and editor. The child of Holocaust survivors, Hoffman studied at the Boston Conservatory, where he received the BM, magna cum laude, in 1981. He earned the MM from the New England Conservatory of Music in 1984, and he received the PhD from Brandeis University in 1993. His teachers included Arthur Berger, Martin Boykan, Hugo Norden, Chris Roze, Harold Shapero, Larry Alan Smith, and Yehudi Wyner. From 1990 to 1998, Hoffman worked as an editor at the music engraving company Scores International in Boston, and he was hired as an editor at ECS Publishing immediately thereafter.

Since the mid-1980s, Hoffman has composed a substantial body of choral music. Many of these pieces reflect his Jewish heritage, and his sacred works can be used in temple services. This music is also sung widely in churches, high schools, universities, and by professional choral ensembles. In addition, he has composed choral works using secular texts along with pieces for keyboard solo, solo voice, chamber ensembles, and full orchestra. Hoffman’s work has been commissioned by ensembles such as the Carolina Brass and ALEA III (a contemporary music ensemble). His piece ...


José A. Bowen and Michael Mauskapf

(b Cincinnati, OH, 23 June 1943). Conductor and pianist.

He began to learn piano at age four, making his debut at ten with the Cincinnati SO, performing the Mendelssohn Second Piano Concerto. His early success led to music lessons with Walter Levin and summer studies at the Marlboro Music Festival (from 1956, including piano lessons with rudolf Serkin) and the Aspen Music School and Festival (from 1957, where he studied with rosina Lhévinne). In 1961, he entered the Juilliard School of Music's graduate division to study conducting with jean Morel and piano with Lhévinne. He joined the Ford Foundation's American Conductors Project in 1964, working with the Baltimore SO and studying under alfred Wallenstein, max Rudolf, and fausto Cleva. There, he met George Szell, who appointed him assistant conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra (1964–70). Like Szell, Levine is known for his impeccable technique and focus on texture, clarity, and ensemble balance....


Luiz Mantovani

(Wilhelm Friedrich)

(b Vienna, June 11, 1880; d Vienna, Nov 6, 1953). Austrian composer, arranger, choirmaster, pianist, and piano teacher. As a child, he sang in the boys’ choir of the Heiligenkreuz Abbey, later studying composition privately with two members of Brahms’s circle, Eusebius Mandyczewski and Josef von Wöss. Rebay graduated in 1904 from the Conservatory of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde, where he was a prize-winning student of Robert Fuchs. He subsequently worked for 16 years as a choirmaster in Vienna, leading two important choirs in that city: the Vienna Choir Association and the Schubertbund. During these years, Rebay acquired a local reputation as a composer of vocal music and regularly accompanied important Viennese singers, including Hans Duhan of the Vienna State Opera. In 1920, Rebay was hired as a piano teacher at his former school (by now renamed the Vienna Academy for Music and Performing Arts), a post he kept until his retirement in ...


Christopher Palmer

revised by Clifford McCarty, Martin Marks, and Nathan Platte

(b New York, NY, 4 April 1922; d Ojai, CA, 18 Aug 2004). Composer and conductor. He was trained as a pianist but also studied composition with Israel Citkowitz, Roger Sessions, Ivan Langstroth and Stefan Wolpe. He attended New York University, then enlisted in the Army Air Corps (1942); he arranged and composed music for some 80 programs for the Armed Forces Radio Service and was a concert pianist for three years after his discharge. Norman Corwin then engaged him to score radio drama, which led to composition for films; Bernstein's third film, Sudden Fear (1952), attracted favorable attention. In 1955, despite suffering career difficulties due to McCarthyism (see Marmorstein), he rose to sudden prominence with his score for The Man with the Golden Arm. In this, as in several scores that followed (e.g. Walk on the Wild Side, 1962), he effectively blended jazz into a modern symphonic idiom to suit gritty stories and contemporary settings. He subsequently became known for his rousing scores for westerns and action films (notably ...


Kate Daubney

(b New York, NY, 21 Nov 1896; d Beverly Hills, CA, 24 May 1960). Composer, arranger, orchestrator, and conductor. He studied the piano with Maurice Gould and Jeanne Franco and composition and orchestration with Frank Saddler. During the 1920s he worked as an arranger for Broadway musicals, including The Girlfriend, Manhattan Mary, and the Ziegfeld Follies of 1920 and 1921. He also wrote songs for the 1922 musical Glory. He established the De PackhEnsemble, which he conducted between 1928 and 1931, then in 1933 he went to Hollywood as an arranger and orchestrator. He worked first for MGM and smaller studios on films such as The Dancing Lady (1933) and Rip Tide (1934). He was also one of the team of five principal orchestrators who assisted composer Max Steiner with Gone with the Wind (1939), a score that exemplifies the richness of orchestral timbre and complexity of arrangement that were hallmarks of film music of the time. In the early 1940s he moved to Twentieth Century Fox, where he worked on a number of Betty Grable musicals, including ...


Martin Marks


(b Los Angeles, CA, 10 Feb 1929; d Beverly Hills, CA, 21 July 2004). Composer and conductor. In the 1940s he studied the piano with Jakob Gimpel and theory and composition with Castelnuovo-Tedesco; he also attended Los Angeles City College, as well as Rózsa’s classes at the University of Southern California. In the 1950s he worked primarily for CBS, composing and conducting music first for radio, then for television. His television credits include numerous scores for such live dramatic programs as Climax! and Playhouse 90, as well as for episodes of long-running series such as Gunsmoke and The Twilight Zone. Although he continued to write for television with some frequency during the 1960s and 70s, after 1962 he mostly scored feature films. Over four decades he completed scores for more than 160 films and collaborated repeatedly with directors including Schaffner, Ridley Scott, Dante, Verhoeven and Schepisi. He worked closely with two outstanding orchestrators, Arthur Morton and Alexander Courage....


James Wierzbicki


(b Cambridge, MA, 27 March 1920; D New York, 5 February 2014).. Conductor, arranger, harmonica player, and composer. He began his professional career in 1938 as a performer and arranger with the Borrah Minevitch Harmonica Rascals. His arrangements for this ensemble brought him to the attention of commercial musicians, and within a few years he was working as an orchestrator for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios on musical films that included Girl Crazy, Meet me in St. Louis, and As Thousands Cheer. After returning to Boston, where he was music director of the Vaughn Monroe Orchestra in the late 1940s, Hayman was named principal arranger for the Boston Pops Orchestra in 1950. In the decades that followed he served as music director for numerous leading entertainers, including Bob Hope, Johnny Cash, Red Skelton, Johnny Carson, Andy Williams, Pat Boone, Olivia Newton-John, and Bobby Vinton. His tune “Ruby” (from the soundtrack for the film ...


David Cooper

(b New York, NY, 29 June 1911; d Los Angeles, CA, 24 Dec 1975). Composer and conductor. In 1929, while still a student at DeWitt Clinton High School, he enrolled for classes in composition and conducting at New York University. The subsequent year he followed his conducting teacher Albert Stoessel to the Juilliard School of Music, where he was taught composition by the Dutch émigré Bernard Wagenaar. He left the Juilliard School after less than two years, apparently because he found the institution too conservative, and returned informally to New York University during the academic year 1932–3 to attend a course in composition and orchestration given by Percy Grainger. Grainger's eclectic approach revealed to Herrmann the range and diversity of the musical materials available to the contemporary composer. Early in 1933 he formed the New Chamber Orchestra from a group of unemployed musicians as a vehicle for his talents as both conductor and composer. The orchestra's repertory brought together contemporary compositions (including those of Charles Ives, with whom Herrmann formed a lasting friendship) and works by English composers such as Henry Purcell and Edward Elgar, symptomatic of his anglophile tendencies....


Clifford McCarty and David Neumeyer

(b Chester, PA, 4 Dec 1910; d Los Angeles, CA, 8 Sept 1991). Composer and conductor.

After attending the Curtis Institute, where he studied the piano with George Frederick Boyle, he won a scholarship (1929) to the Juilliard School. He also studied on scholarship at the Moscow Conservatory (from 1933) and went on to serve as music director of the German Theatre Group and the Latvian State Theatre. He was the only American member of the Union of Soviet Composers, from which he received commissions for two choruses and a set of piano variations. In 1935 he returned to the United States and taught music for dance at Finch, Briarcliff, Sarah Lawrence, and Bennington colleges. In New York he studied composition with Aaron Copland and Ernst Toch and composed ballet scores for Martha Graham, Hanya Holm, and Agnes De Mille. In 1939 he went to Mexico as music director for Anna Sokolow's dance troupe, and while there he studied with ...


Martin Marks

(b Philadelphia, PA, 4 Aug 1912; d Los Angeles, CA, 9 Aug 2004). Composer, arranger, conductor, and author.

He first learned about music from his father, who conducted an orchestra for silent films. While at school he studied several instruments and played professionally in dance bands; at the University of Pennsylvania he studied composition with Harl McDonald and developed a strong interest in jazz. He went to New York (1934), studied privately with Isadore Freed, and continued to play and arrange for bands; his arrangement of “I got rhythm” impressed Gershwin and won him a position as an arranger at Harms/Chappell.

In 1935 Raksin went to Hollywood to work with Charlie Chaplin on the music for Modern Times. This collaboration yielded one of the most effective original scores ever written for a silent film. He also met Alfred Newman, who nurtured his career as a film composer. Raksin settled permanently in Los Angeles in ...