View Full Version : SLATKIN conducts PISTON & SCHUMAN: Symphonies, Orchestral Works @FLAC

04-12-2014, 02:26 AM
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Walter Piston (1894-1976) was a leading light among those mid-twentieth century American
composers who opted to explore traditional musical forms and language. Although he was perhaps
better known as a teacher and the author of a widely used book on harmony than as a composer,
Piston's music displays superb craftsmanship within his selected neo-Classic-Romantic idiom.

Piston was born in Rockland, ME, of Italian lineage; the family name had been Pistone but his
grandparents had Anglicized it by dropping the "e." His parents moved to Boston in 1904. In his
teens, Piston's musical education commenced with piano and violin lessons. At that time, however,
painting was his main interest, but he conceded the superiority of his future wife, Kathryn Nason,
in that field and concentrated on music. With the entry of the United States into the First World War,
Piston hurriedly crammed the rudiments of saxophone technique and enlisted in the Navy as a band
musician. In between rehearsals and performances, he familiarized himself with most of the other
instruments in the band, learning to produce at least a few tunes on each one. This was an invaluable
experience for one whose name would become linked to orchestral composition.

After the war, Piston entered Harvard and began to study music in earnest, graduating summa cum
laude in 1924. From there he went to Paris on a Paine Fellowship to study with Paul Dukas and
Nadia Boulanger. This was a heady time, for many of who would become America's most noted
composers were under the wing of the latter: Copland, Harris, Thompson, and Barber, to name a
few. Piston returned to the U.S. in 1926 and joined the faculty of Harvard, retiring in 1960. As a
composer, Walter Piston remained an enlightened conservative. Taking the neo-Classic mode of
expression and infusing it into larger Romantic forms with flawless craftsmanship, he was one of
the great bearers of the symphonic tradition in the twentieth century.

William Schuman's (1910-1992) 60-year career as a composer and an educator left an
indelible mark on several generations of American musicians. Schuman began exploring jazz
and popular music while attending public school, eventually forming an ensemble of his own
(in which he played violin and banjo). Abandoning a career in commerce, Schuman enrolled in
the Juilliard Summer School, and, in 1933, entered Columbia University's Teacher's College,
eventually taking his bachelor's and master's degrees. After summer study at the Salzburg
Mozarteum in 1935 and the completion of his First Symphony in 1936 (a work subsequently
withdrawn by the composer) he received private instruction from well-known American
composer Roy Harris.

Schuman found an ally in conductor Serge Koussevitsky, who, at Harris' prompting, premiered
the Symphony No.2 in 1938 (also subsequently withdrawn). Between 1938 and 1945 Schuman
served as director of publications for G. Schirmer, Inc. as well as on the faculty of Sarah Lawrence
College, leaving this post to take over as president of the Juilliard School (where he remained until
1961, initiating a wide range of new projects and policies, including the complete reorganization of
the theory/composition program and the creation of the Juilliard String Quartet). Other administrative
positions throughout his long career include serving as president of the Lincoln Center for the
Performing Arts (1962-1969), director of the Koussevitsky Music Foundation, director of the Chamber
Music Society at Lincoln Center, and director of the Walter W. Naumberg Foundation. Late in life
he was awarded the National Medal of the Arts (1987), and was among those premiere American
artists honored at the Kennedy Center in 1989.

Already an established composer in the early 1940s, Schuman was thrust into the national and
international limelight when the very first Pulitzer Prize in music was bestowed upon him in 1943
(for his cantata A Free Song). His Third Symphony, along with Harris' and Copland's
Third Symphonies, is considered by many to be the pinnacle of American symphonic achievement,
with lofty aesthetic aims and rigorous contrapuntal structure. The Violin Concerto of 1959 (first composed
in 1947, but heavily revised during the following decade) is an important American contribution to the
genre, although, like most of Schuman's work, it has fallen into disuse.

This collection includes:

Walter Piston - Symphony No.6, The Incredible Flutist Ballet Suite, Three New England Sketches
William Schuman - Symphony No.10, New England Tripytch, American Festival Overture, Variations on America (Ives/Schuman)

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Music Composed by
Walter Piston
William Schuman

Played by the
Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra

Conducted by
Leonard Slatkin

"One of the two or three great Piston discs of the last decade of the twentieth century, Leonard Slatkin
and the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra's 1991 release of Piston's two most popular works coupled with
what may be his greatest symphony is an ideal place to start listening to the knottiest and gnarliest
of the Great American Symphonists. The Suite from The Incredible Flutist is the most often recorded
of Piston's works, but Slatkin's interpretation is lighter and more graceful than most, and the St.
Louis plays with deft control and vivid colors. New England Sketches (3) are almost as popular, but
again, Slatkin and the St. Louis perform with singular strength, vigor, and tenderness. Symphony
No. 6 has had only a couple recordings since its disc premiere in 1962, but Slatkin and the St. Louis
are simply more polished and more powerful than Schwarz and the Seattle and they make a more
compelling case for the depth and stature of the work as one of the two of three Great American
Symphonists. RCA's digital sound is rich and lush, with plenty of detail."
All Music

"When it comes to American music, it doesn't get much more American than this recording of
four works by William Schuman with Leonard Slatkin conducting the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra.
It starts with Schuman's cheerful American Festival Overture, continues with his almost-but-not-
quite variations on hymn tunes by William Billings (New England Triptych), continues with his
almost-but-not-quite sober orchestration of Ives' Variations on "America," and ends with his last,
and by all means best, of his symphonies, the Tenth, subtitled "American Music." The tunes, the
rhythms, the colors, the shapes, and most of all the spirit of the music is wholly and completely
American: full of enthusiasm, idealism, romanticism, and most of all with the reckless energy of
America at the first peak of its power.

Schuman's orchestral music in particular, like American orchestral music in general, could wish
for no better advocate than Leonard Slatkin. Although not as ebullient as Bernstein or elegant
as Schippers, Slatkin's more measured and more magisterial approach to conducting almost
always elevates the music he conducts. In this 1992, Slatkin and his St. Louis Symphony give
a rousing performance of the American Festival Overture, an affectionate performance of the
New England Triptych, a carousing performance of Variations on "America," and a deeply moving
performance of the Tenth. The St. Louis plays as well or better than on most of its recordings
with Slatkin and RCA's digital sound is clear, clean, and vivid."
All Music

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Enjoy! Don't share! Buy the original! :)

04-12-2014, 02:43 AM
I'd love to get these too


04-12-2014, 03:42 AM
Me too.
Thank you very much.

04-12-2014, 04:27 AM
Me too.
Thank you.

04-12-2014, 05:51 AM
great! can I have a link? thanks wimpel69

04-12-2014, 09:17 AM
Thanks in advance.

04-12-2014, 09:19 AM
May I have a link? Thanks!

04-12-2014, 11:47 AM
YES! I would really like to listen to this!

04-12-2014, 12:05 PM
ANother one! Can I have the link please? Thanks.

04-12-2014, 07:01 PM
Thank you, wimpel69 for posting more great American music. Could you please send me the FLAC links. Thanks.

04-13-2014, 01:55 AM
Thanks and please a link :)

04-13-2014, 03:45 AM
All sent.

04-13-2014, 07:43 AM
thank you

04-13-2014, 07:38 PM
Links received. Thank you again, wimpel69.

04-13-2014, 08:18 PM
Very interested. Thanks!

04-13-2014, 09:31 PM
Interested, flac link would be appreciated!

04-13-2014, 11:32 PM
wimpel69 - bless you for the offer, and I am thrilled to take you up on it, with many thanks!

04-14-2014, 02:12 AM

04-14-2014, 03:43 AM
i would love to have links to these!

04-14-2014, 01:30 PM
Hi Wimpel, I'd love these links too whenever you get the chance. Thanks in advance!

04-15-2014, 02:58 AM
Two sent.

11-26-2014, 08:58 AM
Hi wimpel! Could you please send me the link for the flac tracks?

11-26-2014, 09:09 AM
Hi Wimpel69 - would love these in flac! Many thanks....

11-26-2014, 09:58 AM
Two sent.

11-26-2014, 02:28 PM
May I please request the flac link for this? Thank you.

11-26-2014, 02:53 PM
Please send the links. Thanks!

11-27-2014, 10:26 AM
Final links sent.

Sharing on these albums has ended. No more requests and no re-ups, please!

01-17-2015, 02:55 PM
Link received with many thanks.

May I please request the flac link for this? Thank you.