Talk:Roger Sessions

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Untitled[edit]

Ack. Wanted to apologize for editing your article without talking with you about it first. Should I change it back? Changed Ernst Bloch to Ernest Bloch and added a paragraph, easy enough to do. Will use talk pages in future. Mortified... (First day, but that is no excuse...) Regards Schissel 02:49, 13 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Boosey & Hawkes ad on page 21 of December 1978 issue of Tempo (issue 127, with recollections and a discography-to-that-point by Andrea Olmstead and Paul Rapoport respectively) claims 1972, not 1971, for the double concerto. Anyone have definite information (does it say on the score, for instance?) Schissel | Sound the Note! 19:58, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

To attempt to flesh out the biographical details a bit more:

  • married twice, and that should be "first wife" in "traveling Europe with his wife" (see the article in the same issue of Tempo, pp 10-16, a biographical sketch by Andrea Olmstead)
  • "A first movement of a... symphony in D major won Sessions a prestigious... award at Yale." Sessions put the work aside but later, teaching at Smith College, was offered the opportunity by Josef Stransky to have the work performed there, perhaps with the New York Philharmonic. Sessions sought advice from Bloch, who "having asked Sessions to play the first movement... on the piano," was unsparing in his detection of influences, advised Sessions to scrap the work altogether and suggested that Sessions work for two years with Bloch on composition. (This in the mid-1920s?)
  • Sessions won the Prix de Rome and lived there from 1928 to 1931, after which Otto Klemperer "enticed him to Berlin" (all quotes from the article, mostly p. 11.)
  • His only acknowledged/catalogued works from before his 30th year were the Three Chorale Preludes for Organ, the Incidental Music to the Black Maskers (or some of it) (but not yet transformed into the suite usually played) and the first symphony. (p. 12.)
  • Left Berlin for the US in 1933, his marriage dissolved, finances in very bad straits, his job situation "precarious". His violin concerto ("his most ambitious work to date" ) was unperformed for about five years after composition.
  • 1930s ended well however- second marriage, secure position at Princeton, performance of concerto, birth of two children. Schissel | Sound the Note! 00:12, 14 November 2006 (UTC)