Author Topic: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008  (Read 4114 times)

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Offline vandermolen

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Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« on: March 31, 2013, 01:39:03 AM »
2013 is the Centenary of this long-lived American composer - not that I've seen any recognition of it in the music journals.  My knowledge of him is really just based on his 'Meditations on Ecclesiastes' (1956), of which there are several recordings. It is a quite beautiful work, for string orchestra, that I have come to appreciate more and more. It won the Pulitzer Prize in 1957. I think that it would probably appeal to those who like the string music of Vaughan Williams (like the Concerto Grosso for example) and, with its biblical theme, it brought to mind the 'Meditations on a Theme of John Blow' by Arthur Bliss and it also very much brought to mind his 'Music for Strings'. The Dello Joio work is on a fine old Koch CD conducted by James De Priest, who sadly died recently and the Oregon Symphony Orchestra. The CD also features Menotti's 'Apocalypse' and 'the Masks' - a great work by an even lesser known composer Ronald Lo Presti, whom I may never have heard of without the intervention of a kind member of this forum.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2013, 12:41:53 PM by Brewski »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline springrite

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2013, 07:29:57 AM »
I have three or four works by him. I like it very much so I have ordered some more, all of which will be picked up when I go to the US in October. I will finally hear some of his chamber works!

I first heard the name from Karl Haas's program Adventure in Good Music.
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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2013, 12:17:49 PM »
I have three or four works by him. I like it very much so I have ordered some more, all of which will be picked up when I go to the US in October. I will finally hear some of his chamber works!

I first heard the name from Karl Haas's program Adventure in Good Music.

Thanks for the response Paul. I also have a CD (Ormandy, Philadelphia Orch) with his Symphonic Suite 'Air Power' - it is basically entertaining and uplifting film music. I was remined of Gershwin in places.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2013, 02:13:54 AM »
. . . I first heard the name from Karl Haas's program Adventure in Good Music.

Ah, the memories . . . .
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Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2013, 04:24:25 PM »
Surprised nobody mentioned his Triumph of Saint Joan Symphony. I remember liking this work a good bit when I first heard it on the James Sedares Koch recording. I need to revisit this work and this Sedares recording also contains Dello Joio's Variations, Chaconne & Finale.

Here's the recording in question:

"Humility is society's greatest misconception."

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2013, 03:32:17 PM »
Surprised nobody mentioned his Triumph of Saint Joan Symphony. I remember liking this work a good bit when I first heard it on the James Sedares Koch recording. I need to revisit this work and this Sedares recording also contains Dello Joio's Variations, Chaconne & Finale.

Here's the recording in question:



Many thanks for drawing my attention to this John. Do you know 'Meditations on Ecclesiastes'?
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline Mirror Image

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2013, 03:34:02 PM »
Many thanks for drawing my attention to this John. Do you know 'Meditations on Ecclesiastes'?

You're welcome, Jeffrey. I do not know Meditations on Ecclesiastes. I'll check it out at some point. Didn't you say this was a work for string orchestra?
"Humility is society's greatest misconception."

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2013, 03:47:53 PM »
You're welcome, Jeffrey. I do not know Meditations on Ecclesiastes. I'll check it out at some point. Didn't you say this was a work for string orchestra?

Yes it is. A lovely work which grows on me more and more.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline San Antone

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2013, 05:16:54 PM »
I remember his choral work "To Saint Cecilia" was a work that I once thought to be excellent.  I haven't heard it in a long time and will try to hunt it down.

Offline sound67

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2013, 09:00:16 AM »
Another interesting all-Dello Joio album features a trio of ballets he wrote for Martha Graham:

"Vivaldi didn't compose 500 concertos. He composed the same concerto 500 times" - Igor Stravinsky

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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2013, 01:06:19 AM »
Another interesting all-Dello Joio album features a trio of ballets he wrote for Martha Graham:



How interesting - although not good for my bank balance!

What do you think of the music?
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline springrite

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2013, 09:08:50 AM »
Surprised nobody mentioned his Triumph of Saint Joan Symphony. I remember liking this work a good bit when I first heard it on the James Sedares Koch recording. I need to revisit this work and this Sedares recording also contains Dello Joio's Variations, Chaconne & Finale.

Here's the recording in question:


Have that one. I like the Variations, Chaconne and Finale a lot better, though the St. Joan is a very good work as well.
Do what I must do, and let what must happen happen.

Offline lescamil

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2013, 08:29:36 PM »
Dello Joio composed perhaps one of the few good works that's in the major wind ensemble repertory, and that is the Fantasies on a Theme by Haydn. It's one of the few often-performed works in the repertory that doesn't have me running for the earplugs when I have to sit through it in rehearsals.
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Offline springrite

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Re: Norman Dello Joio 1913-2008
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2013, 04:19:28 AM »
Dello Joio composed perhaps one of the few good works that's in the major wind ensemble repertory, and that is the Fantasies on a Theme by Haydn. It's one of the few often-performed works in the repertory that doesn't have me running for the earplugs when I have to sit through it in rehearsals.
Hey! I have that one somewhere! I must have filed it under another composer...
Do what I must do, and let what must happen happen.