Revelli, William D(onald)

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Revelli, William D(onald)

Revelli, William D(onald) , American band director and teacher; b. Spring Gulch, near Aspen, Colo., Feb. 12, 1902. The family moved to southern III, near St. Louis, when he was an infant. He began to study the violin at the age of 5, and later was a pupil of Dominic Sarli. After graduating from the Chicago Musical Coll. in 1922, he completed his education at the Columbia School of Music in Chicago (diploma in music education, 1925). In 1925 he became supervisor of music in Hobart, Ind., where he founded the high school band, which he in time built to national prominence, winning the high school band championship for 6 consecutive years. In 1935 he was made director of the Univ. of Mich. Band at Ann Arbor, and was also in charge of its wind instruments dept. Revelli’s Symphonic Band toured the country many times and made several trips abroad under State Dept. auspices, most notably a 16-week tour in early 1961 that took it to the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Turkey, Egypt, and other countries in the Middle East. In 1971 Revelli became director emeritus of the Univ. of Mich. Bands. As an instructor and promoter of bands within the U.S. academic system, Revelli continued the tradition of Fillmore and A.A. Harding. He was active as an ed., adviser, and administrator of various undertakings in the American band field; was also founder of the Coll. Band Directors National Assn. (1941) and was its honorary life president. He received honorary doctoral degrees from 5 American univs.


G. Cavanagh, W.D. R.: The Hobart Years (diss., Univ. of Mich., 1971).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire