French institution. Created as the Petite Académie in 1623, the organization that was to become the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres was initially dedicated to the glory of the king and to the history of his reign. Its scope was enlarged in 1703 by Gros de Boze, who called for the study of all aspects of civilization, from its origins to the 18th century. Discussions of music seem to have taken place from the end of the 17th century under the aegis of Charles Perrault, although documentation of such discussions dates only from 1706. The study of ancient music was begun under Galland and Fraguier and continued under Burette. The music of the ancients constituted the favourite subject of the academicians throughout the first half of the 18th century, and was revived by Michel de Chabanon and J.B. Rochefort between 1770 and 1780. A prize was established by Durey de Noinville in ...
Howard Mayer Brown
revised by Iain Fenlon
At various times in musical history, the word ‘academy’ has meant diverse things, including (i) a formal association of people interested in mutually communicating their opinions on various philosophical, intellectual or cultural issues (most such academies sponsored theatrical events with music and some included discussions of musical questions on their regular agenda), or even, in some few cases, a formal association devoting itself primarily to the study of music; (ii) a more loosely formed circle of intellectuals interested in holding lively discussions on various topics; (iii) an official national society that serves as an arbiter of tastes and standards; (iv) a society formed specifically to sponsor musical performances (including opera); (v) a single concert, either public or private; or (vi) an institution for the training of musicians.
The first of these definitions must be considered the original and therefore the primary meaning. The word itself derives from the mythological character Akademos, after whom a garden or grove in Athens was named, where it is said that the Greek philosopher Plato met his students to discuss philosophy, although recent scholarship has shown that exclusive reference to Plato was never intended by users of the word (Chambers, ...
Gregory F. Barz
The now defunct African Music Society was founded in 1948 by Hugh Tracey and anthropologist Winifred Hoernle, whose principal objective was to encourage research in traditional and popular musics in Africa. The society emphasized the importance of recordings to document the range and character of African indigenous music, much of which has been extremely localized due to barriers of distance and language, and through dependence on oral tradition. The society also encouraged the dissemination of musical styles through education and radio programmes. It developed into the ...
German musical organization. Established in 1861 in Weimar and dedicated to the promotion of new music (primarily through performance), the Allgemeiner Deutscher Musikverein (ADMV) was the first national music society in Germany. Focal points of its activity were the annual festivals that took place in alternating German and German-speaking cities and initially featured the music of Liszt and his colleagues in the ‘New German’ movement. During its first decade the ADMV gave premières of music by such composers as Wagner, Liszt, Cornelius and Felix Draeseke. Liszt provided the society with artistic leadership but, as president, Franz Brendel was the chief guiding spirit during its early years. Upon Brendel’s death in 1868 the noted Leipzig choral conductor Carl Riedel took over the presidency. During Riedel’s leadership the society entered into a period of identity crisis that was exacerbated by the deaths of Wagner and Liszt: it gradually broadened its mandate to encompass the promotion of music by non-Germans (Saint-Säens, Dvořák, Tchaikovsky) and by the former conservative opposition (Brahms). These developments intensified under the leadership of Riedel’s successors, Hans von Bronsart von Schellendorf (...
American artists’ colony. The AAR was founded by Charles F. McKim in 1894 for architects and classicists. In 1920, the AAR added composers, urged by Edward MacDowell before his death and administered from 1920–40 by Felix Lamond. The AAR is modeled on the French Academy that awards the Prix de Rome (to Hector Berlioz and Claude Debussy, for example). The Rome Prize is awarded through a national juried competition. Winning Fellows, 30 American artists and scholars, are given a year in Rome supported by a stipend, room, board, travel expenses, and a studio at the 11-building complex atop the Janiculum hill. The Academy’s mission is “to foster the pursuit of advanced research and independent study in the fine arts and humanities.” Resident and Visiting Artists and Scholars also contribute to the interactive artists’ colony atmosphere, which includes communal living, eating, and traveling, and twice weekly trips with AAR members lecturing on the history, archeology, or architectural or art history of various Roman, Vatican, and nearby sites....
Organization of American writers, artists, architects, and composers. The National Institute of Arts and Letters, founded in 1898 by the American Social Sciences Association, formed the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1904 to confer further distinction on 50 of its 250 members. In 1976 the two organizations merged under a single board of directors, although they continued to function as separate bodies. In 1993, the two organizations combined to form one organization of 250 members, called the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Its headquarters is in New York.
The Academy has encouraged the advancement of music in the United States by presenting concerts of American works and by giving financial assistance to composers through the administration of awards and prizes. Among the musicians elected to the academy have been John Adams, Samuel Barber, Leonard Bernstein, Cage, Elliott Carter, Copland, Henry Cowell, Ellington, Gideon, Charles Ives, Piston, Rochberg, Schuman, Sessions, Stravinsky, Thomson, Tower, and Zwilich. At an annual ceremony, new members are inducted, honorary membership is bestowed on foreign artists (such as Benjamin Britten and Pierre Boulez), and various awards are presented (...
Raoul F. Camus
Professional organization founded in 1929 in New York by Edwin Franko Goldman (who also became its first president) and a group of eminent bandmasters from the USA and Canada. John Philip Sousa served as its first honorary life president. The objectives of the ABA are to honor (by invitation to membership) outstanding achievement in the area of the concert band and its music; to encourage prominent composers of all countries to write for the concert band; and by example and leadership to enhance the cultural standing of bands. Associate Membership may be attained by firms in the music industry or related fields who wish to identify themselves with the objectives and activities of the association. The association sponsors the Ostwald Band Composition Award, and has published the biannual Journal of Band Research since 1964. The American Bandmasters Association Foundation, affiliated with the ABA but not under its control, provides funds for the Ostwald Band Composition Award, commissions symphonic band music, and partially funds the ABA Research Center at the University of Maryland....
Debra L. Spurgeon
Professional organization founded in 1959. A group of 35 attendees at the biennial conference of the Music Teachers National Association in Kansas City, Missouri, formed this organization. A steering committee consisting of J. Clark Rhodes, Elwood Keister, Curt Hansen, Harry Robert Wilson, R. Wayne Hugoboom, Warner Imig, and Archie N. Jones created a working philosophy called the original ten purposes. The first purpose states: “To foster and promote choral singing which will provide artistic, cultural, and spiritual experiences for the participants.” The first national convention, held the following year in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in conjunction with a convention of the Music Educators National Conference (MENC), featured five concerts, reading and interest sessions, and panel discussions, a model that continues to the present day. During its first decade the ACDA formed division and state chapters following the MENC model. R. Wayne Hugoboom was appointed the first executive secretary (1964...