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A Letter to Leslie Bassett (1923-2016)

Gabriela Lena Frank and Leslie Bassett

The love that a student has for her teacher is a special one. I miss you like crazy. I still hear your words of counsel from our music lessons of old. I remember your distinctive walk, frail and steely both, across worn carpet to the treble-bright piano in your studio, thick music score in hand. When I was over early at the house, you and beautiful Anita would fry up corn pancakes while discussing a marvelous new clarinetist who bled “for his composer and played like it was his last breath!”

Congrats to the 2016 Grammy Award Winners

grammy-2016-sq

Whether or not you caught the glitz, the glam, and the shade-throwing acceptance speeches during the 2016 Grammy Awards ceremony broadcast last night, you still may have missed out on the jazz and classical awards presented earlier in the day. And the winners are…

Steven Stucky (1949-2016)

Steven Stucky

It is with great sadness that we report American composer Steven Stucky died of brain cancer in Ithaca, New York on February 14, 2016.

Michael Jackson-Themed Orchestra Piece Wins ASCAP Nissim Prize

Vincent Calianno sitting at a desk and staring at a large orchestral score manuscript.

Vincent Calianno has been awarded the 36th annual ASCAP Foundation Rudolf Nissim Prize for The Facts and Dreams of the World According to Michael Jackson, a 12-minute work for orchestra. Selected by a panel of conductors from among 170 entries, the Brooklyn-based Calianno will receive a prize of $5,000.

Remembering Composer and MTC Founder John Duffy (1926-2015)

John Duffy

With John Duffy, everything was possible. He radiated an optimism as forthright and clear as it was free of guile and self-importance. Though the limits of observable reality might be challenged, audacity never distracted from core purpose. His optimism happily went about its business. It lived solidly on terra firma. It got things done.

About Those 2016 Grammy Nominations

The official social profile image for the Grammy Awards, a cartoon of an old horn gramophone.

Media pundits will probably debate whether the latest from Taylor Swift, Kendrick Lamar, or The Weeknd will get the nod as 2016 Album of the Year, but the choice for Best Contemporary Classical Composition might ultimately be more interesting; it certainly seems even more competitive.

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