Please support Classical Kids today

For the next generation of classical music lovers
Donate

Please give some bucks for Bach

Support all your favorite composers, classic and contemporary
Donate

Support our mission of sharing classical music

Iconic performances, because of the music written for them
Donate

Please support our Bach bash

Support Pipedreams as we honor and carry on the legacy of Bach
Donate

Support premier symphony orchestras at home

Help us celebrate the works of composers, old and new, by donating today
Donate

Composers Datebook®

with host John Birge

Sunday, February 23

Deems Taylor and David Del Tredici in Wonderland

Synopsis

In February of 1919, members of the New York Chamber Music Society gave the premiere performance of this music—an instrumental suite by the American composer Deems Taylor, titled "Through the Looking Glass." A few years later, Deems Taylor landed a job as music critic for the New York World, and following that, became known coast-to-coast as the radio commentator for New York Philharmonic broadcasts, and as the host of a popular quiz-show titled "Information, Please." His voice was also heard as the commentator for the 1940 Disney film, "Fantasia."

On today's date in 1980, another American composer premiered a musical work inspired by "Alice in Wonderland." This was David Del Tredici's "In Memory of a Summer's Day," first presented by the St. Louis Symphony conducted by Leonard Slatkin. By 1980, Del Tredici had already composed several successful works inspired by the Lewis Carroll books, but "In Memory of Summer's Day" capped the lot, and won that year's Pulitzer Prize for Music.

Del Tredici was a protégé of Aaron Copland, and recalled how Copland would react to Del Tredici's compositions. "He'd say something noncommittal at first, such as 'It's very nice.' Then maybe an hour or so later, at dinner, he would turn to me, apropos of nothing, and say, 'I think the bass line is too regular, and the percussion should not always underline the main beat and would you please pass the butter.'"

Music Played in Today's Program

Deems Taylor (1885-1966) Through The Looking Glass Suite Seattle Symphony; Gerard Schwarz , cond. Delos 3099

David Del Tredici (b. 1937) In Memory of A Summer Day St. Louis Symphony; Leonard Slatkin, cond. Nonesuch 79043

Additional Information

{"airdates":[{"id":26369,"date":"2020-02-23","listen":"apm-audio:/composers_datebook/2020/02/23/datebook_20200223_128.mp3","updated_at":"2019-06-28T20:26:39.000Z","episode":{"id":8069,"synopsis":"Deems Taylor and David Del Tredici in Wonderland","additional":null,"body":"In February of 1919, members of the New York Chamber Music Society gave the premiere performance of this music—an instrumental suite by the American composer Deems Taylor, titled \"Through the Looking Glass.\" A few years later, Deems Taylor landed a job as music critic for the New York World, and following that, became known coast-to-coast as the radio commentator for New York Philharmonic broadcasts, and as the host of a popular quiz-show titled \"Information, Please.\" His voice was also heard as the commentator for the 1940 Disney film, \"Fantasia.\" \n\nOn today's date in 1980, another American composer premiered a musical work inspired by \"Alice in Wonderland.\" This was David Del Tredici's \"In Memory of a Summer's Day,\" first presented by the St. Louis Symphony conducted by Leonard Slatkin. By 1980, Del Tredici had already composed several successful works inspired by the Lewis Carroll books, but \"In Memory of Summer's Day\" capped the lot, and won that year's Pulitzer Prize for Music.\n\nDel Tredici was a protégé of Aaron Copland, and recalled how Copland would react to Del Tredici's compositions. \"He'd say something noncommittal at first, such as 'It's very nice.' Then maybe an hour or so later, at dinner, he would turn to me, apropos of nothing, and say, 'I think the bass line is too regular, and the percussion should not always underline the main beat and would you please pass the butter.'\" \n\n","playdate":"1972-02-23","pieces":[{"composer":"Deems Taylor (1885-1966)","title":"Through The Looking Glass Suite","performer":"Seattle Symphony; Gerard Schwarz , cond.","catalog":"Delos 3099"},{"composer":"David Del Tredici (b. 1937)","title":"In Memory of A Summer Day","performer":"St. Louis Symphony; Leonard Slatkin, cond.","catalog":"Nonesuch 79043"}],"links":[{"title":"On Deems Taylor","href":"http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deems_Taylor"},{"title":"On David Del Tredici","href":"http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Del_Tredici"}],"airdates":[{"id":18394,"date":"2014-02-23","listen":"apm-audio:/composers_datebook/2014/02/23/datebook_20140223_128.mp3"},{"id":19490,"date":"2011-02-23","listen":"apm-audio:/composers_datebook/2011/02/23/datebook_20110223_128.mp3"},{"id":20586,"date":"2008-02-23","listen":"apm-audio:/composers_datebook/2008/02/23/datebook_20080223_128.mp3"},{"id":21681,"date":"2005-02-23","listen":"apm-audio:/composers_datebook/2005/02/23/datebook_20050223_128.mp3"},{"id":23961,"date":"2017-02-23","listen":"apm-audio:/composers_datebook/2017/02/23/datebook_20170223_128.mp3"},{"id":26369,"date":"2020-02-23","listen":"apm-audio:/composers_datebook/2020/02/23/datebook_20200223_128.mp3"}]}}],"meta":{"start_date":"2020-02-23","end_date":"2020-02-23"}}

Before you go...

Each day, John gladly shares his passion for music with you. The knowledge that he offers, and the stories he shares through Composers Datebook is made possible with your support. Please, take 2 minutes and make a gift today for your 2 minutes of daily music knowledge.