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MORTON GOULD

By the age of four Morton Gould was showing signs of musical precociousness, playing the piano by ear; and by the time he was six he had composed his first piece of music, a waltz for piano entitled Just Six. With the help of a scholarship given to him by Walter Damrosch he entered the New York Institute of Musical Art (later the Juilliard School) when he was eight, and went on to study at the New York University School of Music, where he completed the two-year curriculum by the time he was fifteen. Soon afterwards he was giving piano recitals in and around New York, playing the piano in dance bands, theatres and cinemas, and touring as half of the piano duo Gould and Shefter. When the RKO Radio City Music Hall opened in 1932, the young Gould was its staff pianist, and by the age of twenty-one he was conducting, composing and arranging a series of orchestral programmes called Music for Today for WOR Mutual Radio, New York. This series continued on a weekly basis for eight years, during which Gould attained national prominence by appealing to a wide-ranging audience with his combination of classical and popular musical programming. He also acquired the discipline of writing to a deadline and in place of tempo indications started to provide descriptive titles for individual movements.

In parallel with this radio-driven side of his work, Gould also composed symphonic works, notably Chorale and Fugue in Jazz (1933), which was first performed by Leopold Stokowski and the Philadelphia Orchestra. One of his most famous concert works, Spirituals, was first given under his own direction in New York in 1941, and was later performed by the New York Philharmonic and Cleveland Orchestras. In 1943 he became the musical director of another radio show The Chrysler Hour, for which he composed one of the first commercial jingles, and appeared on the Cresta Blanca Carnival programme. One of his most popular compositions, American Salute (1943), also dates from this period.

During the 1940s Gould began to write for the stage, film and ballet, as well as continuing to work for radio and in the concert hall. As a result of his enormous radio popularity he and his orchestra appeared in the film Delightfully Dangerous (1945), and in the same year he composed the music for the Broadway musical Billion Dollar Baby. Following the creation of his score for the Jerome Robbins ballet Interplay (1945), he wrote the music for Fall River Legend (1947), with choreography by Agnes de Mille, and Audubon (1969–1983) for George Balanchine. He successfully integrated jazz, blues, gospel, country-and-western, and folk elements (to name just a few) into these compositions, as well as demonstrating his unequalled mastery of orchestration and his creation of imaginative formal structures. The instantly recognizable American sounds which Gould was able to conjure up led to his receiving three commissions for the US Bicentennial in 1977 (including American Ballads, Symphony of Spirituals, and Something to Do). Always open to new styles, he incorporated a tap dancer into his Tapdance Concerto, a rapper/narrator into The Jogger and the Dinosaur, and the sounds of firefighters at work into Hosedown.

As a conductor, Gould led all the major American orchestras as well as those of Canada, Mexico, Europe, Japan, and Australia. In 1966 he won a GRAMMY® Award for his recording of Charles Ives’s Symphony No. 1 with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, a recording that led the way for a new appreciation of Ives’s work. Gould received the American Symphony Orchestra League’s 1983 Gold Baton Award, was elected president of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers in 1986, a post he held until 1994, and in 1986 was also elected to the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. He served on the board of the American Symphony Orchestra League and on the National Endowment for the Arts music panel. He was honoured by the Kennedy Center in 1994, in recognition of his lifetime’s contribution to American culture, and received the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for his Stringmusic, commissioned by the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington.

Like Leonard Bernstein, André Previn and Arthur Fiedler, Gould was able to move with a natural facility between the different musical worlds of the symphony orchestra, musical comedy, films, jazz and popular music. The fact that he was able to do so should not obscure his considerable strengths in all of these fields. On record, apart from his recordings of his own works such as Spirituals, American Symphonette No. 2, Latin American Symphonette and Fall River Legend, his discography as a conductor was highly discriminating. It included excellent accounts of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Symphony No. 2 ‘Antar’, Myaskovsky’s Symphony No. 21, Nielsen’s Symphony No. 2, Ives’s Symphony No. 1, Three Places in New England, Orchestral Set No. 2 and Robert Browning Overture, Copland’s Clarinet Concerto and Shostakovich’s Symphonies Nos 2 and 3. Gould’s lighter side is well displayed in albums such as Blues in the Night and Morton Gould Makes The Scene.

© Naxos Rights International Ltd. — David Patmore (A–Z of Conductors, Naxos 8.558087–90).

Box Set Release Catalogue Number
AMERICAN SPIRIT (The): Roots and Transformations Naxos 8.505233


Albums featuring this artist are available for download from ClassicsOnline.com
View by Role: Classical Artist | Classical Composer | Arranger | Conductor
Role: Classical Artist 
Album Title  Catalogue No  Work Category 

Role: Classical Composer 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 
50 PATRIOTIC SONGS - Music for the 4th of July Altissimo
75442200162
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
AIR COMBAT COMMAND HERITAGE OF AMERICA BAND: American Originals Altissimo
75442261732
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL - A Collection of Patriotic Songs by the Bands and Choruses of the United States Military Altissimo
75442272152
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
AMERICAN CLASSICS SAMPLER Naxos
8.559118
Orchestral
AMERICAN SALUTE (AN) - SPIRIT OF THE NATION Naxos
8.559147
Orchestral
Band Music - GOULD, M. / STEFFE, W. / WERLE, F. / VOSBEIN, T. / NEWTON, J. / WARREN, G.W. / WARD, S. / BERLIN, I. (We The People) Altissimo
75442201032
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
Band Music - GOULD, M. / WARD, S. / STEFFE, W. / BERLIN, I. / SOUSA, J.P. / KOFF, C. / GOLD, B. / WALTERS, H. (Let Freedom Ring) Altissimo
75442260752
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
Chamber Music with Clarinet - POULENC, F. / BERNSTEIN, L. / STRAVINSKY, I. / GOULD, M. / BARTOK, B. (Waiting for Benny) (J. Herve) Naxos
8.573032
Chamber Music
Choral Concert: United States Army Soldier's Chorus - EGNER, P. / HARLING, W.F. / GOULD, M. / KITTREDGE, W. / HEARSHEN, I. (Duty, Honor, Country) Altissimo
75442255842
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM - Dance Portrait (PAL) Arthaus Musik
100174
Ballet DVD
DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM (Studio Production, 1989) (NTSC) Arthaus Musik
100175
Ballet DVD
DIAMOND: Ahava / Music for Prayer Naxos
8.559412
Choral - Sacred
EASTMAN WIND ENSEMBLE: American Concert Band Masterpieces (1956) Naxos Classical Archives
9.81002
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
GOULD, M.: American Ballads / Foster Gallery / American Salute (Ukraine National Symphony, Kuchar) Naxos
8.559005
Orchestral
GOULD, M.: American Concertette No. 1 / Cowboy Rhapsody / American Suite / New China March / Red Cavalry (Music of Morton Gould) (Gould) (1945-1947) Naxos Classical Archives
9.80841
Concertos, Orchestral
GOULD, M.: Concerto Grosso / Formations / Cinerama Holiday Suite (Seattle Symphony, Schwarz) Naxos
8.559715
Instrumental, Concertos, Orchestral, Wind Ensemble/Band Music
GOULD, M.: Dance Variations / MENOTTI, G.C.: Sebastian Suite (Stokowski) (1953, 1954) Naxos Classical Archives
9.80163
Orchestral
GOULD, M.: Derivations / Saint Lawrence Suite / Symphony No. 4, "West Point" (University of Kansas Wind Ensemble, Weiss) Naxos
8.572629
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
GOULD, M.: Fall River Legend / Jekyll and Hyde Variations (Neal, Nashville Symphony, Schermerhorn) Naxos
8.559242
Orchestral, Ballet
GREENWOOD, L.: God Bless the USA / JENKINS, J.W.: American Overture / SOUSA, J.P.: The Stars and Stripes Forever (United States Army Chorus) Altissimo
75442255652
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
MILLER, Glenn: Glen Island Special (1938-1942) Naxos Jazz Legends
8.120746
Jazz
Music for the Presidential Inauguration Altissimo
75442200152
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
Naxos Audiophile Kingdom Naxos
8.554915DX
Orchestral
Orchestral Music - IVES, C. / PERSICHETTI, V. / HARRIS, R. / BACON, E. / GOULD, M. / McKAY, G.F. / TUROK, P. (Lincoln Portraits) (Slatkin) Naxos
8.559373-74
Orchestral
ORIGINAL WORKS FOR CONCERT BAND, Vol. 1 Altissimo
75442259862
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
PARADE MUSIC Altissimo
75442259922
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
PRESIDENT'S OWN UNITED STATES MARINE BAND: American Salute (An) Altissimo
75442202572
Wind Ensemble/Band Music, Orchestral, Wind Ensemble/Band Music
PRESIDENT'S OWN UNITED STATES MARINE BAND: Bicentennial Collection (The) Altissimo
75442261012
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
PRESIDENT'S OWN UNITED STATES MARINE BAND: Bicentennial Collection (The), Vol. 7 Altissimo
75442262002
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
PRESIDENT'S OWN UNITED STATES MARINE BAND: Family Album Altissimo
75442270232
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
PRESIDENT'S OWN UNITED STATES MARINE BAND: Liberty for All - An Interactive CD of History and Culture Altissimo
75442255782
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
SMITH, J.S.: Star Spangled Banner (The) / THOMPSON, R.: The Testament of Freedom (A Musical Journey, Vol. 2) (United States Army Chorus) Altissimo
75442255832
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
TANGO IN BLUE BIS
BIS-CD-1175
Orchestral
TCHEREPNIN: 5 Concert Etudes / GOULD: Pieces of China / ADAMS: China Gates BIS
BIS-CD-1110
Instrumental
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE ACADEMY BAND: In The Spires Altissimo
75442270792
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE BAND AND SINGING SERGEANTS: America the Beautiful Altissimo
75442262452
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE BAND OF THE GOLDEN WEST: War and Remembrance Altissimo
75442271052
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE BAND OF THE ROCKIES: Fantasies and Heroes Altissimo
75442260432
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE BAND OF THE WEST: Century of Progress (A) Altissimo
75442261582
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE BAND: America! Altissimo
75442255562
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE CONCERT BAND: Proud Sounds Altissimo
75442262512
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE HERITAGE OF AMERICA BAND: American Patrol (An) Altissimo
75442271072
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE HERITAGE OF AMERICA BAND: Ceremonial Music Altissimo
75442270612
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE HERITAGE OF AMERICA BAND: Sketches Altissimo
75442261772
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES AIR FORCE SINGING SERGEANTS AND CONCERT BAND: I Am An American Altissimo
75442270412
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES ARMY BAND: Flag Flies High (The) Altissimo
75442260612
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES ARMY BAND: From Sea to Shining Sea Altissimo
75442270362
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES ARMY GROUND FORCES BAND: Freedom's Guardian Altissimo
75442262682
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES ARMY GROUND FORCES BAND: Made in America Altissimo
75442270902
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES COAST GUARD BAND: Always Ready Altissimo
75442255702
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES COAST GUARD BAND: Americana Altissimo
75442260832
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES COAST GUARD BAND: Holiday Fanfare Altissimo
75442270772
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES COAST GUARD BAND: Holiday Fanfare American Patriotic Classics
75442280022
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES COAST GUARD BAND: Liberty for All Altissimo
75442270882
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES COAST GUART BAND: Greatest Hits Altissimo
75442259882
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES MILITARY BANDS: Not Sousa, Vol. 4 (Marching On … More Great Music Not by John Philip Sousa) Altissimo
75442256042
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES NAVAL ACADEMY BAND: Heritage of the March, Vol. 74 (The Music of Gould and Hazel) The Robert Hoe Collection
75442203722
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
UNITED STATES NAVY BAND: Mystic Chords of Memory Altissimo
75442270162
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
WILLIAMS, J.: Bugler's Dream / FLOYD, D.: Hero for Today / WARD, S.: America the Beautiful (The Dream Goes On) (US Navy Sea Chanters, Gambone) Altissimo
75442255722
Wind Ensemble/Band Music
WOMEN AT THE PIANO - AN ANTHOLOGY OF HISTORIC PERFORMANCES, Vol. 2 (1926-1950) Naxos Historical
8.111121
Instrumental
WORLD FAMOUS MARCHES Naxos International
8.990010
Orchestral

Role: Arranger 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 

Role: Conductor 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 





 
 
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