COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, AND CRITICS by Claire R. Reis

COMPOSERS, CONDUCTORS, AND CRITICS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Mrs. Reis' reminiscences of a life spent in music is in the main a lively history of the League of Composers which has acted so admirably to help the contemporary composer since its inception in 1923. She tells first of her own background, her work at Cooper Union with the People's Music League organized to bring music to all, of her association with the International Composers' Guild from which she seceded- along with others- to start the League of Composers when she could not accept the principle of giving premieres only. In an engaging style, Mrs. Reis reveals how the League served to promote the composer and educate the public to contemporary music by commissioning works, arranging performances, honoring composers and affording them a means of communication with colleagues. There are insights into personalities in such incidents as Prokofieff's encounter with a Hammond organ, Stravinsky's faithfulness to red wine, a display of Milhaud's modesty; there are stories of the performances, one which required a seven-foot puppet Don Quixote for DeFallÉ's chamber opera, another in which Schoenberg was dismayed to discover an accompanist playing in the wrong clef. The milieu of the vibrant music world is conveyed here in a manner to delight the informed music lover.

Publisher: Oxford