Hart, Weldon, American composer; b. Place-Bear Spring, Term., Sept. 19, 1911; d. (suicide) East Lansing, Mich., Nov. 20, 1957. He studied in Nashville, at the Univ. of Mich., and at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y, with Hanson and Rogers, receiving his Ph.D. in 1946. He was head of the music dept. of Western Ky. State Coll. (1946–49) and director of the School of Music of the Univ. of W.Va. (1949–57). In 1957 he was engaged as head of the music dept. of Mich, State Univ. in East Lansing; upon arrival there, he became despondent over his inability to produce an impression with a concert of his works, and killed himself with carbon monoxide exhaust in his car. Yet his music, although not innovative, was well crafted. He wrote The Dark Hills, symphonic poem (1939), Sinfonietta (1944), Sym. (1945), Violin Concerto (1951), 3 West Virginia Folk Songs for Chorus and Orch. (1954), several violin pieces, and choruses.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire