Ben-Yohanan, Asher, Israeli composer and pedagogue; b. Kávala, Greece, May 22, 1929. He settled in Palestine in 1935 and studied composition with Ben-Haim in Tel Aviv. After training from Copland at the Berkshire Music Center in Tanglewood (summer, 1958), he studied with Reese and La Rue at N.Y. Univ. (1958–61). He continued his training with Nono in Venice, and in Darmstadt (1966), and then studied at the Univ. of Mich. (M.M., 1970). In 1970–71 he was the Morse fellow in composition and a teacher at the Univ. of Cincinnati Coll.-Cons. of Music. He taught theory and literature at the Israel Cons, of Music (1962–69) and at the Telma Yellin Music and Arts School (1964–87), where he also was head of the music dept. (until 1975). In 1973 he became prof. of theory and composition at Bar-Ilan Univ. From 1989 to 1992 he was chairman of the Israel Composers’ League. Ben-Yohanan’s works have been widely performed in Israel and in many other countries throughout the world.
ORCH.: Independence Day Parade for Wind Band (1956); Festive Overture (1957); 2 Movements (1959); Music (1967); Concertino for Strings (1973); Variations (1980; rev. 1989); Meditations for Chamber Orch. (1992). CHAMBER: String Quartet (1962–64); Chamber Music for 6 (1968); Quartetto Concertato for Piano, Clarinet, Trombone, and Cello (1969–70); Meditations on a Folk Song for Piano, Flute, and Clarinet (1972); 3 Pieces for 3 Woodwinds for Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon (1978); Woodwind Quintet (1985); Divertimento for Brass Trio (1988–89); Hidden Feelings for Harp (1990). VOCAL: Ode to Jerusalem for Chorus (1954); Mosaic for Soprano and 10 Players (1970–71); Four Summer Songs for Baritone and Piano (1974); Three Songs Without Titles for Soprano and Piano (1983); Yefeh Nof (O Fair Sight) for Chorus (1984).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire