Alec Wilder's 100th Birthday Concert
September 23rd, 2007 - 3:00 pm
Shuck Recital Hall, River Campus
The prolific American composer, Alec Wilder (1907-1980) produced pieces of remarkable originality in many forms: instrumental solos, chamber music, works for orchestral and wind ensemble, musical comedies, film music, ballets, operas, and hundreds of popular songs. His music, a unique blend of American musical traditions ranging popular song and jazz to standard "classical" forms and techniques, fiercely resists all labels.
Wilder endeared himself to a small, diverse and loyal group of performers including jazz musicians, classical musicians and popular singers. Frank Sinatra was an early fan of Wilder's music and an avid supporter. Other noted musicians associated with Wilder include Erich Leinsdorf, Frederick Fennell, Gunther Schuller, John Barrows, Marian McPartland, Stan Getz, Gerry Mulligan, Doc Severinson, Clark Terry, Mabel Mercer, Peggy Lee, and Tony Bennett. Gunther Schuller, a noted composer in his own right, observed, “What so many of us respect in Alec Wilder was his absolute independence as an artist. For years Alec wrote music of taste and quality with that personal melodic touch that was all his own, undaunted by musical fashion or fads. In short…he was an American ‘original.’”
Southeast faculty performers on this delightfully eclectic program include clarinetist Michael Dean, contralto Leslie Jones, contralto, percussionist Shane Mizicko, flutist Paul Thompson, flute, pianist Matt Yount, violinist, Brandon Christensen and the Southeast Brass Quintet.