Brehm, Alvin

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Brehm, Alvin

Brehm, Alvin, American double bass player, conductor, and composer; b. N.Y., Feb. 8, 1925. He studied with Fred Zimmerman (double bass) and Giannini (orchestration) at the Juilliard School of Music in N.Y. (1942–43), and then with Riegger (composition) at Columbia Univ. (M.A., 1951). After making his debut as a double-bass player (1942), he performed with the Pittsburgh Sym. Orch. (1950–51), the Contemporary Chamber Ensemble (1969–73), the Group for Contemporary Music (1971–73), the Philomusica Chamber Music Soc. (1973–83), and the Chamber Music Soc. of Lincoln Center (1984–89). After making his debut as a conductor (1947), he was active in promoting contemporary music. He was founder-conductor of the Composer’s Theatre Orch. (1967), and also taught at the State Univ. of N.Y. at Stony Brook (1968–75), the Manhattan School of Music (1969–75), and the State Univ. of N.Y at Purchase (from 1981), where he also was head of its music division (1981–90).


DRAMATIC: The Final Theory, chamber opera (1994). orch.:Hephaestus Overture (1966); Concertino for Violin and Strings (N.Y., April 22, 1975); Piano Concerto (N.Y., Nov. 1979); Double Bass Concerto (N.Y., Nov. 1982); Tuba Concerto (1982). chamber:Divertimento for Trumpet, Horn, and Trombone (1962); Dialogues for Bassoon and Percussion (1964); Divertimento for Woodwind Quintet (1965); Brass Quintet (N.Y., Feb. 1967); Colloquy and Chorale for Bassoon Quartet (1974); Cello Sonata (1974); Quarks for Flute, Bassoon, String Quartet, and Piano (N.Y., Feb. 1976); Sextet for Piano and Strings (N.Y., April 1976); A Pointe at His Pleasure for Renaissance Instruments (1979); AYU Variations for Flute and Guitar (1980); Tre canzone for Viola and Piano (N.Y., Nov. 1980); La bocca della verità for Flute, Clarinet, Violin, Cello, and Piano (N.Y., Oct.1983); Sextet for Woodwind Quintet and Piano (1984); Children’s Games for Flute, Clarinet, Violin, Viola, Cello, and Piano (1984–85); Circles for Piano (1991); Lion’s Den for Violin and Percussion (1992); By the Numbers for Piano (1995). vocal: Song Cycle for Soprano and 10 Instruments, after Garcia Lorca (NY., Nov. 1973).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire