Faà di Bruno, Giovanni Matteo [Horatio, Orazio] 83

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Fennell, Frederick

(b Cleveland, OH, 2 July 1914). American conductor and teacher. He attended the Eastman School (BM 1937, and MM 1939). Appointed to the faculty of Eastman, he conducted the school’s several ensembles (1939–62), and in 1952 formed the Eastman Wind Ensemble. This had 45 members, and its programmes differed from those of the full symphonic bands in that they included chamber compositions to be performed by only part of the ensemble as well as works played by the entire group. Fennell’s pioneering series of 22 commercial recordings for Mercury brought about a reconsideration of the wind medium and established performance and literature models for the more than 20,000 wind ensembles that were subsequently established in American schools. In 1965 Fennell became conductor-in-residence at the University of Miami, where he remained until 1980. He appeared as a guest conductor with the Cleveland Orchestra, the Minneapolis SO, the LSO and the Boston Pops Orchestra, and was appointed principal guest conductor of the Interlochen Arts Academy. In 1977 he made the first American digital recording of a large ensemble (for Telarc) with the Cleveland Symphonic Winds. He was conductor of the Kosei Wind Orchestra of Tokyo from 1984 to 1995, when he became its conductor laureate. He has edited many works for band, and his writings include Time and the Winds (1954), The Drummer’s Heritage (1956), The Wind Ensemble (1988) and a series of essays published in The Instrumentalist under the heading ‘Basic Band Repertory’. He is the recipient of many awards, and was honoured in Japan with the naming of the Frederick Fennell Hall in Kofu.


A.S. Phfeffer: ‘In the Living Presence of Frederick Fennell’, The Absolute Sound, no.77 (1992), 34–58

R.E. Rickson: Ffortissimo: a Bio-Discography of Frederick Fennell: the First Forty Years, 1953 to 1993 (Cleveland, 1993)


Fennelly, Brian

(b Kingston, NY, 14 Aug 1937). American composer. He studied at Yale University (1963–8; MusM, PhD) with Mel Powell, Donald Martino, Allen Forte, George Perle, Gunther Schuller and others. From 1968 to 1997 he taught at New York University. His honours include grants from the Martha Baird Rockefeller Fund (1975, 1979, 1980), a Guggenheim Fellowship (1980–81) and a lifetime achievement award from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters (1997). He has written both 12-note works (Wind Quintet, 1967; Tesserae II, 1972) and freely atonal compositions (Locking Horns, 1993; Skyscapes, 1995) and has shown an increasing interest in instrumental virtuosity (the series of Tesserae for solo instruments, 1971–81). His music often unites rhythmically complex surfaces with dramatic, expressive gestures. Many of his later works (after 1982) involve harmonic fields derived from serial manipulation, as in the various Thoreau-related compositions for orchestra.


(selective list)

Orch: In Wildness is the Preservation of the World, 1975; Quintuplo, brass qnt, orch, 1977–8; Tropes and Echoes, cl, orch, 1981; Conc., sax, str, 1983–4; Fantasy Variations, 1984–5; Thoreau Fantasy no.1, 1984–5; Lunar Halos, 1990; A Thoreau Sym., 1992–7: On Civil Disobedience; A Sprig of Andromeda; Chrysalis

Vocal: Songs with Improvisation (e e cummings), Mez, cl, pf, 1964, rev. 1969; Keats on Love, chorus, 1989

Chbr and solo inst: Wind Qnt, 1967; Str Qt, 1971–4; Tesserae I–IX, various solo insts, 1971–81; Sonata seria, pf, 1976; Scintilla prisca, vc, pf, 1979; Canzona and Dance, vn, cl, vc, pf, 1982–3; Trio no.2, vn, vc, pf/hpd, 1986–7; Brass Qnt, 1987; Locking Horns, brass qnt, 1993; Skyscapes, a sax, str qt, 1995

El-ac: Evanescences, a fl, cl, vn, vc, tape, 1969; SUNYATA, 1970

Principal publishers: Margun, MMB, Ricordi, Pro Nova, American Composers Edition


Fenton, George [Howe, George (Richard)]

(b Bromley, 19 Oct 1949). English composer. His early career as a freelance guitarist was superseded by full-time composition in the mid-1970s, when he began producing theatre and television scores; the latter have included music for plays by Alan Bennett, for wildlife documentaries by David Attenborough and signature tunes for BBC news bulletins. His film work increased after the success of his score for Richard Attenborough's Gandhi in 1981, since when he has divided his time between the UK and Hollywood, working with directors as diverse as Attenborough, Stephen Frears, Nicholas Hytner, Neil Jordan, Ken Loach and Harold Ramis. He has taught at the National Film School, London, and at the RCM, where he is visiting professor. He has received four British Academy of Film and Television awards and five nominations for Academy Awards.

Fenton's unusual versatility has allowed him to switch between mainstream Hollywood styles and more adventurous idioms with ease. The evocative electronic soundscapes of The Company of Wolves (1984) and BBC documentaries co-exist with full orchestral scores ranging from an elaborate Impressionism to poignant simplicity, and sometimes coloured by unorthodox instrumentation, as in the original use of viols and sackbuts in The Crucible (1996). His studies of traditional music facilitated a synthesis of Western techniques with Indian textures in both Gandhi (scored in collaboration with Ravi Shankar) and The Jewel in the Crown, while African music was celebrated in Cry Freedom (co-composed by Jonas Gwangwa). Elsewhere, Fenton has made effective use of folksong, jazz, rock, classical and Baroque elements in appropriate contexts.


(selective list)

Film scores: Gandhi (dir. R. Attenborough), 1981; The Company of Wolves (dir. N. Jordan), 1984; Clockwise (dir. C. Morahan), 1985; 84 Charing Cross Road (dir. D. Jones), 1986; Cry Freedom (dir. Attenborough), 1987; The Dressmaker (dir. J. O'Brien), 1987; White Mischief (dir. M. Radford), 1987; Dangerous Liaisons (dir. S. Frears), 1988; A Handful of Dust (dir. C. Sturridge), 1988; High Spirits (dir. Jordan), 1988; We're No Angels (dir. Jordan), 1989; Memphis Belle (dir. M. Caton-Jones), 1990; Final Analysis (dir. P. Joanou), 1991; The Fisher King (dir. T. Gilliam), 1991; Groundhog Day (dir. H. Ramis), 1992; Hero (Accidental Hero) (dir. Frears), 1992; Born Yesterday (dir. L. Mandoki), 1993; Shadowlands (dir. Attenborough), 1993; Ladybird, Ladybird (dir. K. Loach), 1994; Land and Freedom (dir. Loach), 1994; The Madness of King George (dir. N. Hytner), 1994; Heaven's Prisoners (dir. Joanou), 1995; Mary Reilly (dir. Frears), 1995; Carla's Song (dir. Loach), 1996; The Crucible (dir. Hytner), 1996; In Love and War (dir. Attenborough), 1996; Multiplicity (dir. H. Ramis), 1996; The Woodlanders (dir. P. Agland), 1996; Courtesan (dir. M. Herzgovitz), 1997; Dangerous Beauty (dir. Herskovitz), 1997; The Object of My Affection (dir. Hytner), 1997; Ever After (dir. A. Tennant), 1998; Living Out Loud (dir. R. LaGravenese), 1998; My Name is Joe (dir. Loach), 1998; You’ve Got Mail (dir. N. Ephron), 1998; Grey Owl (dir. Attenborough), 1999

TV scores: 6 plays by Alan Bennett: Me, I'm Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Afternoon Off, Doris and Doreen, One Fine Day, All Day on the Sands, The Old Crowd, 1978; Shoestring, 1979; Bloody Kids, 1980; The History Man, 1980; Going Gently, 1981; Bergerac, 1981–5; Walter, 1982; An Englishman Abroad, 1983; Saigon: Year of the Cat, 1983; The Jewel in the Crown, 1984; Telly Addicts, 1985; The Monocled Mutineer, 1986; Talking Heads, 1987; 102 Boulevard Haussmann, 1990; The Trials of Life, 1990; Life in the Freezer, 1993; Beyond the Clouds, 1994; Fall of Saigon, 1995; Monarchy, 1995; The Flickering Flame, 1997; Here and Now, 1997; Polar Bear, 1997; Second Chance, 1997; Talking Heads 2, 1998; Shanghai Vice, 1999; BBC news and current affairs programmes

Other: Birthday (children's op, T. Kraemer), 1982; Music to Picture, pf, 1990; 5 Parts of the Dance, tpt, pf, mar, 1993; Veni sancte spiritus – Sacris solemniis, SATB, org, 1993 [from Shadowlands]; Octet, 8 vc, 1998

Incid music, incl. scores for the Royal Shakespeare Company and National Theatre


Principal publisher: Shogun


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