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Modernist Abstraction and the Abstract Art: Four Saints and the Queer Composition of America's Sound

Nadine Hubbs

in The Queer Composition of America's Sound: Gay Modernists, American Music, and National Identity

Published in print:
2004
Published Online:
May 2012
ISBN:
9780520241848
eISBN:
9780520937956
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:
10.1525/california/9780520241848.003.0001
Subject:
Music, History, American

This chapter examines Gertrude Stein and Virgil Thomson's opera Four Saints in Three Acts. It suggests that this opera was a landmark collaborative creation of U.S. modernist artists engaged in ... More


The “Apolitical” Opportunist: Virgil Thomson

Emily Abrams Ansari

in The Sound of a Superpower: Musical Americanism and the Cold War

Published in print:
2018
Published Online:
June 2018
ISBN:
9780190649692
eISBN:
9780190649722
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/oso/9780190649692.003.0003
Subject:
Music, History, Western

This chapter examines composer and music critic Virgil Thomson, a man who liked to present himself as apolitical but who had close ties to the federal government and the secretly CIA-funded Congress ... More


Virgil Thomson’s “Cocktail of Culture”

Carol J. Oja

in Making Music Modern: New York in the 1920s

Published in print:
2000
Published Online:
January 2010
ISBN:
9780195058499
eISBN:
9780199865031
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195058499.003.0016
Subject:
Music, History, American

Virgil Thomson was one of the most outspoken critics of neoclassicism, at one point disparaging it as a “lingua franca” that was essentially “an indigestible mixture cocktail of culture”. Thomson's ... More


Musical and Literary Portraiture

Joshua S. Walden

in Musical Portraits: The Composition of Identity in Contemporary and Experimental Music

Published in print:
2018
Published Online:
December 2017
ISBN:
9780190653507
eISBN:
9780190653538
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/oso/9780190653507.003.0002
Subject:
Music, Theory, Analysis, Composition, History, Western

The first chapter examines musical portraits of literary figures. It first explores Virgil Thomson’s multiple works in the genre including his portrait of Gertrude Stein, to interpret the influence ... More


George Antheil's Ballet Mécanique

Maurice Peress

in Dvorák to Duke Ellington: A Conductor Rediscovers America's Music and Its African-American Roots

Published in print:
2004
Published Online:
May 2008
ISBN:
9780195098228
eISBN:
9780199869817
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195098228.003.0014
Subject:
Music, History, Western

This chapter describes the researching and reconstructing of what was perhaps the most infamous modern music event of the 20th century after Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, George Antheil's “Ballet ... More


Power in the Land

Beth E. Levy

in Frontier Figures: American Music and the Mythology of the American West

Published in print:
2012
Published Online:
September 2012
ISBN:
9780520267763
eISBN:
9780520952027
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:
10.1525/california/9780520267763.003.0007
Subject:
Music, History, American

This chapter focuses on the music of composer Virgil Thomson, whose vocabulary for America's middle landscape was made up primarily of Protestant hymn tunes. In the mid-1930s, Thomson considered ... More


Virgil Thomson and the Press

Arthur Berger

in Reflections of an American Composer

Published in print:
2002
Published Online:
May 2012
ISBN:
9780520232518
eISBN:
9780520928213
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:
10.1525/california/9780520232518.003.0010
Subject:
Music, History, American

The chapter illustrates the criticisms on music made by composer-critic Virgil Thomson. Thomson was hired to work for the Boston Evening Transcript. In America composer-critics are frowned upon, ... More


The Golden Age: Pan Americanist Culture, War, and the Triumph of Universalism

Carol A. Hess

in Representing the Good Neighbor: Music, Difference, and the Pan American Dream

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780199919994
eISBN:
9780199345618
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199919994.003.0005
Subject:
Music, Ethnomusicology, World Music, History, American

This chapter examines the climax of north-south sameness-embracing, the period following the outbreak of war in September 1939. One manifestation of Pan Americanist culture was Latin American–themed ... More


The Classical Music Mainstream

James Wierzbicki

in Music in the Age of Anxiety: American Music in the Fifties

Published in print:
2016
Published Online:
April 2017
ISBN:
9780252040078
eISBN:
9780252098277
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:
10.5406/illinois/9780252040078.003.0008
Subject:
Music, History, American

This chapter looks at how the American Symphony Orchestra League reported that thirty million people in the U.S. are actively interested in concert music. This does not mean jazz, popular ditties, ... More


A “Southern, Brown, Burnt Sensibility”: Four Saints in Three Acts, Black Spain, and the (Global) Southern Pastoral

Paige A. McGinley

in Creating and Consuming the American South

Published in print:
2015
Published Online:
January 2016
ISBN:
9780813060699
eISBN:
9780813050928
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:
10.5744/florida/9780813060699.003.0010
Subject:
History, Cultural History

This chapter discusses the 1934 black-cast opera Four Saints in Three Acts, composed by Virgil Thomson with a libretto by Gertrude Stein. Employing Stein’s landscape dramaturgy as an interpretive ... More


From The Spanish Earth (1937) to Danton’s Death (1939)

Howard Pollack

in Marc Blitzstein: His Life, His Work, His World

Published in print:
2012
Published Online:
January 2013
ISBN:
9780199791590
eISBN:
9780199949625
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199791590.003.0011
Subject:
Music, History, American, Popular

This chapter covers Blitzstein’s work on the film score to Joris Ivens’ The Spanish Earth (about the Spanish Civil War) with Virgil Thomson; his involvement with The Arrow Press; his radio opera, ... More


The Little Friends

Howard Pollack

in The Ballad of John Latouche: An American Lyricist's Life and Work

Published in print:
2017
Published Online:
November 2017
ISBN:
9780190458294
eISBN:
9780190458324
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/oso/9780190458294.003.0004
Subject:
Music, History, American

Latouche had friendship with a circle dubbed by Virgil Thomson “The Little Friends,” which included Harry Dunham, Paul Bowles, Jane Bowles, and Latouche’s future wife Theodora Griffis, the scion of a ... More


Reflections of an American Composer

Arthur Berger

Published in print:
2002
Published Online:
May 2012
ISBN:
9780520232518
eISBN:
9780520928213
Item type:
book
Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:
10.1525/california/9780520232518.001.0001
Subject:
Music, History, American

This book describes the music scene in New York and Boston since the 1930s, discussing the heady days when the author was a member of a tight-knit circle of avant-garde young composers, mentored by ... More


The Queer Composition of America's Sound: Gay Modernists, American Music, and National Identity

Nadine Hubbs

Published in print:
2004
Published Online:
May 2012
ISBN:
9780520241848
eISBN:
9780520937956
Item type:
book
Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:
10.1525/california/9780520241848.001.0001
Subject:
Music, History, American

This book shows how a gifted group of Manhattan-based gay composers were pivotal in creating a distinctive “American sound” and in the process served as architects of modern American identity. ... More


The Selected Correspondence of Aaron Copland

Aaron Copland

Elizabeth B. Crist and Wayne Shirley (eds)

Published in print:
2006
Published Online:
October 2013
ISBN:
9780300111217
eISBN:
9780300133479
Item type:
book
Publisher:
Yale University Press
DOI:
10.12987/yale/9780300111217.001.0001
Subject:
Music, History, American

This book is devoted to the correspondence of composer Aaron Copland, covering his life from age eight to eighty-seven. The chronologically arranged collection includes letters to many significant ... More


From My Diary: Brief Encounters

Arthur Berger

in Reflections of an American Composer

Published in print:
2002
Published Online:
May 2012
ISBN:
9780520232518
eISBN:
9780520928213
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:
10.1525/california/9780520232518.003.0019
Subject:
Music, History, American

The author shares his brief encounters with composers such as Igor Stravinsky, Nadia Boulanger, Darius Milhaud, Aaron Copland, Virgil Thomson, and various other composers. During one of his visits to ... More


Masterpieces of the Twentieth Century

Vincent Giroud

in Nicolas Nabokov: A Life in Freedom and Music

Published in print:
2015
Published Online:
March 2015
ISBN:
9780199399895
eISBN:
9780199399932
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199399895.003.0013
Subject:
Music, History, Western

Nabokov’s first major initiative as CCF secretary general was to organize in Paris, in the spring of 1952, a major arts festival celebrating the artistic achievement of the first half of the ... More


Dialogue without Words: Identities and Dichotomies in Copland’s Piano Quartet

Jennifer DeLapp-Birkett

in Rethinking American Music

Published in print:
2019
Published Online:
September 2019
ISBN:
9780252042324
eISBN:
9780252051159
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:
10.5622/illinois/9780252042324.003.0012
Subject:
Music, History, American

In Jennifer DeLapp-Birkett’s analysis, the “identities and dichotomies” of her title concern a single piece of music, Aaron Copland's Piano Quartet (1950) but also a number of extramusical issues ... More


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