Background information Born November 22, 1925 Queens Died June 21, 2015 (aged 89) Genres Jazz Occupation(s) president of New England Conservatory Instruments French horn, flute Associated acts Modern Jazz Society, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra
Gunther Alexander Schuller (November 22, 1925 – June 21, 2015) was an American composer, conductor,  horn player, author, historian and jazz musician.
Biography and works [ ]
Early years [ ]
Schuller was born in
Queens, New York City, the son of German parents Elsie (Bernartz) and Arthur E. Schuller, a violinist with the  New York Philharmonic.
He studied at the  Saint Thomas Choir School and became an accomplished French horn player and flute player.
At age 15, he was already playing horn professionally with the American Ballet Theatre (1943) followed by an appointment as principal hornist with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (1943–45), and then the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in New York, where he stayed until 1959.
During his youth, he attended the Precollege Division at the  Manhattan School of Music, later going on to teach at the school. But, already a high school dropout because he wanted to play professionally, Schuller never obtained a degree from any institution.  He began his career in jazz by recording as a horn player with  Miles Davis (1949–50).
Performance and growth [ ]
In 1955, Schuller and jazz pianist
John Lewis founded the Modern Jazz Society, which gave its first concert at  Town Hall, New York, the same year and later became known as the Jazz and Classical Music Society. While lecturing at Brandeis University in 1957, he coined the term " Third Stream" to describe music that combines classical and jazz techniques. He became an enthusiastic advocate of this style and wrote many works according to its principles, among them  Transformation (1957, for jazz ensemble),  Concertino (1959, for jazz quartet and orchestra),  Abstraction (1959, for nine instruments), and  Variants on a Theme of Thelonious Monk (1960, for 13 instruments) utilizing Eric Dolphy and Ornette Coleman. In 1966, he composed the opera  The Visitation.
He also orchestrated  Scott Joplin's only known surviving opera for the Treemonisha Houston Grand Opera's premiere production of this work in 1975.
Career maturity [ ]
In 1959, Schuller gave up performance to devote himself to composition, teaching and writing. He conducted internationally and studied and recorded jazz with such greats as
Dizzy Gillespie and John Lewis among many others. Schuller wrote over 190 original compositions in many musical genres. 
In the 1960s and 1970s, Schuller was president of
New England Conservatory, where he founded The New England Ragtime Ensemble. During this period, he also held a variety of positions at the Boston Symphony Orchestra's summer home in Tanglewood, serving as director of new music activities from 1965 to 1969 and as artistic director of the Tanglewood Music Center from 1970 to 1984 and creating the Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music.
Schuller was or-in-chief of Jazz Masterworks Editions, and co-director of the
Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra in Washington, D.C. Another effort of preservation was his ing and posthumous premiering at  Lincoln Center in 1989 of Charles Mingus's immense final work, , subsequently released on Columbia/Sony Records. Epitaph He was the author of two major books on the history of jazz,  Early Jazz (1968) and  The Swing Era (1991).
His students included
Irwin Swack,  Ralph Patt,  John Ferritto, Eric Alexander Hewitt, Mohammed Fairouz, Oliver Knussen, Nancy Zeltzman, Riccardo Dalli Cardillo and hundreds of others. See:  List of music students by teacher: R to S#Gunther Schuller.
Accomplishments in final decades [ ]
From 1993 until his death, Schuller served as Artistic Director for the Northwest Bach Festival in
Spokane, Washington state. Each year the festival showcased works by J.S. Bach and other composers in venues around Spokane. At the 2010 festival, Schuller conducted the Mass in B minor at St. John's Cathedral, sung by the chamber choir from Eastern Washington University, accompanied by the Spokane Symphony. Other notable performances conducted at the festival include the  St Matthew Passion in 2008 and Handel's in 2005.
Schuller's association with Spokane began with guest conducting the Spokane Symphony for one week in 1982.
He then served as Music Director from 1984–1985  and later regularly appeared as a guest conductor. Schuller also served as Artistic Director to the nearby Festival at Sandpoint. 
His modernist orchestral work
Where the Word Ends, organized in four movements corresponding to those of a symphony, premiered at the Boston Symphony Orchestra in 2009.
In 2011 Schuller published the first volume of a two-volume autobiography,
Gunther Schuller: A Life in Pursuit of Music and Beauty.
In 2012, Schuller premiered a new arrangement, the
Treemonisha suite from Joplin's opera. It was performed as part of The Rest is Noise season at London's South Bank in 2013.
Schuller died on June 21, 2015 in
Boston, from complications from leukemia. He married Marjorie Black, a singer and pianist, in 1948. Their marriage produced two sons, George and Edwin, and lasted until her death in 1992.  His sons survive him, as does his brother Edgar.
Awards and recognition [ ]
Schuller was the recipient of many awards, including the 1994
Pulitzer Prize for his composition written for the Louisville Orchestra, , the Of Reminiscences and Reflections MacArthur Foundation "genius" award (1991), 1st place in the Kennedy Center Friedheim Awards (1987), the William Schuman Award (1988), given by  Columbia University for "lifetime achievement in American music composition",  and ten honorary degrees. He received the  Ditson Conductor's Award in 1970. In 1993,  magazine honored him with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to jazz; the Down Beat BMI Foundation bestowed another Lifetime Achievement Award on him the following year. In 2005, a festival of Schuller's music directed by  Bruce Brubaker involved the Boston Symphony, Harvard University, and New England Conservatory. Mr. Schuller was awarded  The Edward MacDowell Medal in the Arts from the MacDowell Colony in 2015. "As a composer and teacher," the composer Augusta Read Thomas, the chairwoman of the selection committee for the MacDowell award, said at the time, "he has inspired generations of students, setting an example of discovery and experimentation." 
Grammy Award for Best Album Notes
Gunther Schuller (notes writer) for Footlifters performed by Gunther Schuller ( 1976)
Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music Performance
Partial discography [ ]
As arranger [ ]
John Lewis  
As conductor [ ]
The New England Conservatory Ragtime Ensemble
Birth of the Third Stream  
The Modern Jazz Quartet  
Exposure (Atlantic, 1960)
With ( Gerard Schwarz cornet) and the Columbia Chamber Ensemble
As sideman [ ]
Frank Sinatra 
Mitch Miller 
Gigi Gryce  
Johnny Mathis 
Books [ ]
Musings: The Musical Worlds of Gunther Schuller. Oxford University Press. 1986. 
Early Jazz: Its Roots and Musical Development. Oxford University Press. 1968. New printing 1986. 
The Swing Era: The Development of Jazz, 1930–1945. Oxford University Press. 1991. 
Gunther Schuller: A Bio-Bibliography Greenwood Publishing Group, 1987. 
The Compleat Conductor. Oxford University Press, 1998. 
Horn Technique. Oxford University Press, 1962. New Printing 1992.  Gunther Schuller: A Life in Pursuit of Music and Beauty. University of Rochester Press, 2011. 
References [ ]
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Matt Schudel (2015-06-22). "Gunther Schuller, Pulitzer Prize-winning composer who bridged jazz and classical music, dies at 89". The Washington Post . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
^ a b c
Allan Kozinn (2015-06-22). "Gunther Schuller Dies at 89; Composer Synthesized Classical and Jazz". The New York Times . Retrieved . 2015-06-23
"BMI Mourns the Loss of Jazz and Classical Great Gunther Schuller". BMI Foundation. June 22, 2015 . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
"1950s". Manhattan School of Music . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
"Gunther Schuller". New Music Box . Retrieved . June 24, 2015 /
^ a b c
"Gunther Schuller, Pulitzer-winning jazz and classical musician, dies aged 89". The Guardian. June 21, 2015 . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
^ a b
"Loomis, George, "Boston Symphony Orchestra/Levine, Symphony Hall, Boston", ''Financial Times'' (February 10, 2009)". Financial Times. February 10, 2009 . Retrieved . October 26, 2010
Young, Logan (April 11, 2013). "Jazz Appreciation Month: Gunther Schuller, 'Transformation. '" Classicalite . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
Giola, Ted (July 28, 2008). "Gunther Schuller: Concertino for Jazz Quartet and Orchestra". Jazz.com. Archived from the original on April 19, 2014 . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
^ a b
Yanow, Scott. "John Lewis Presents Jazz Abstractions". AllMusic . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
Berger, Joseph (July 19, 2010). "Reclaimed Jewel Whose Attraction Can Be Perilous". The New York Times . Retrieved . July 21, 2010
Scherer, Barrymore Laurence (December 6, 2011). ". 'Treemonisha' as It Was Intended To Be" The Wall Street Journal . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
"Gunther Schuller (1925–2015)". Horn Society . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
Dyer, Richard. "From the Audio Archives: Schuller, Spectra". Tanglewood.org . Retrieved . July 29, 2012
"Jazz Exhibits, Jazz Events, Smithsonian Masterworks Orchestra, Jazz Listserv, Jazz Merchandise". Smithsonian Jazz . Retrieved . October 26, 2010
"Mingus' Magnum Opus: 'Epitaph' In Concert". NPR. July 24, 2008 . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
"Early Jazz". Oxford University Press . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
"The Swing Era". Oxford University Press . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
Dwight Winenger (September 11, 1999). "Irwin Swack Music". Dwightwinenger.net . Retrieved . October 26, 2010
Peterson, Jonathon (2002). "Tuning in thirds: A new approach to playing leads to a new kind of guitar". American Lutherie: The Quarterly Journal of the Guild of American Luthiers. Tacoma, WA: The Guild of American Luthiers. 72 (Winter): 36–43. ISSN 1041-7176. Archived from the original on October 21, 2011 . Retrieved . October 9, 2012
"Archived copy". Archived from the original on February 19, 2014 . Retrieved . February 2, 2014
"Bach's B Minor Mass a major job — Spokesman.com — Feb. 5, 2010". Times. Spokesman.com . Retrieved . October 26, 2010
Marty Demarest (February 8, 2002). "The Spokane Connection". Inlander.com . Retrieved . October 26, 2010
"Music Director". Spokane Symphony . Retrieved . October 26, 2010
Michael Delucchi. "Gunther Schuller makes the music beautiful". Sandpointonline.com . Retrieved . October 26, 2010
"University of Rochester Press".
"The Rest is Noise: American mavericks". Time Out.
Jeremy Eichler (2015-06-22). "Gunther Schuller, 89; classical-jazz giant". Boston Globe . Retrieved . 2015-08-26
Tsioulcas, Anastasia (June 21, 2015). "Gunther Schuller, Who Bridged Classical Music And Jazz, Dies At 89". NPR . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
Musings: The Musical Worlds of Gunther Schuller by Gunther Schuller (1986), Oxford University Press
^ a b
"Former NEC President Gunther Schuller To Receive 2015 Edward MacDowell Medal". New England Conservatory. April 7, 2015 . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
"American Brass Quintet Pays Tribute to Retiring Members, Raymond Mase and David Wakefield, and Welcomes New Members, Louis Hanzlik and Eric Reed, on Thursday, October 16, 2014 at 8 p.m., in Juilliard's Peter Jay Sharp Theater". The Juilliard School. September 4, 2014 . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
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"Review of Festival – I Hear America: Gunther Schuller at 80" Archived June 15, 2012, at the Wayback Machine., New Music Connoisseur, 2005
^ a b
Mathieson, Kenny (2002). Cookin' hard bop and soul jazz, 1954–65. Edinburgh: Canongate. ISBN 9780857866165.
Price, ed. by Emmett G. (2010). Encyclopedia of African American music. Oxford: Greenwood. ISBN 9780313341991.
Kirchner, Bill (2005). The Oxford companion to jazz. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195183597.
Cooke, Mervyn; Horn, David (2002). The Cambridge companion to jazz. Cambridge Companions to Music (1. publ. ed.). New York: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521663205.
Bogdanov, Vladimir (2002). All music guide to jazz : the definitive guide to jazz music (4. ed.). San Francisco, CA: Backbeat Books [u.a.] ISBN 9780879307172.
Babbitt, Gunther Schuller ; foreword by Milton (1999). Musings : the musical worlds of Gunther Schuller : a collection of his writings (1st Da Capo Press ed.). New York: Da Capo Press. ISBN 9780306809026.
Carlos do Nascimento Silva, Luiz (2000). Put your dreams away : a Frank Sinatra discography (1. publ. ed.). Westport, Conn. [u.a.]: Greenwood Press. ISBN 0313310556.
Lambert, Philip (2013). Alec Wilder. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. p. 63. ISBN 9780252094842.
Silver, Horace (2006). Let's Get to the Nitty Gritty: The autobiography of Horace Silver. Berkeley, Calif. [u.a.]: University of California Press. p. 211. ISBN 9780520243743.
Summers, Claude (2004). The Queer Encyclopedia of Music, Dance & Musical Theater (1st ed.). San Francisco: Cleis Press. pp. 165–166. ISBN 9781573441988.
^ a b c d e f g
"Books by Gunther Schuller". Goodreads . Retrieved . June 23, 2015
External links [ ]