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CLASSICAL  June 2005

CLASSICAL June 2005

Subject:

David Diamond Dead at 89

From:

Scott Morrison <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 14 Jun 2005 16:31:10 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

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text/plain (51 lines)

>From the Juilliard website:

   Composer David Diamond Dies at 89

   By Ben Mattison
   14 Jun 2005

   David Diamond, one of the leading American composers of the 20th
   century, died yesterday at his home near Rochester, New York,
   the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reports. He was 89.

   At a time when serial music was dominant in American composition,
   Diamond was a neo-Romantic with an ear for melody.  In an interview
   with the Seattle Times last month, he said, "I have always thought
   music had to have strong melodic contours, good rhythmic variety
   and counterpoint, or it would make no dent on people....  Our
   society needs consonance; it was always a must, because of the
   communicative power of that kind of music."

   Diamond's many works included 11 symphonies, ten string quartets,
   art songs, choral music, solo prices for piano and string
   instruments, sonatas, and more. Perhaps his most-performed piece
   was Rounds for String Orchestra.

   Born in Rochester in 1915, Diamond studied for a year at the
   Eastman School of Music before leaving for New York, where he
   worked with Roger Sessions at the New Music School and Dalcroze
   Institute.  In 1935, he traveled to Paris, where he studied with
   Nadia Boulanger.

   In the 1940s, he returned to the United States and wrote the
   first of his important works, including his first four symphonies
   and first three string quartets-the third of which won the 1947
   New York Music Critics' Circle Award-as well as Rounds. He moved
   to Italy in the 1950s and remained there until 1966. Shortly
   after his return to the United States, Leonard Bernstein and the
   New York Philharmonic premiered his Symphony No. 5 and his Piano
   Concerto. Diamond, Bernstein said at the time, was a "vital
   branch in the stream of American music."

   Diamond was chairman of the composition department at the Manhattan
   School of Music in the late 1960s; he taught at the Juilliard
   School from 1973 to 1997. He received the William Schuman medal,
   the gold medal of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the
   Edward MacDowell Award, and the National Medal of the Arts.

   According to the Democrat and Chronicle, Diamond did not wish
   to have a funeral, but Seattle Symphony conductor Gerard Schwarz,
   a champion of his music, plans to organize a memorial concert.

Scott Morrison

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