Becker, John Joseph

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Becker, John Joseph (b Henderson, Ky., 1886; d Wilmette, Ill., 1961). Amer. composer. Prof. of comp., North Texas College, 1906–14; dir. of mus., Univ. of Notre Dame, 1918–28; chairman of fine arts dept., St Thomas College, St Paul, 1928–33. While at St Paul his romantic-impressionist style as composer changed into more radical and dissonant idiom after assoc. with Cowell, Ives, Ruggles, and Riegger. Several of his later works carry message of social protest. From 1943, dir. of mus. and composer in residence, Barat College, Lake Forest, Ill. Comp. 7 syms. between 1915 and 1954, the last being unfinished; 2 pf. concs., va. conc., hn. conc.; 7 Soundpieces for various chamber combinations; The Snow Goose (orch.); 1-act opera Deirdre of the Sorrows (1945).