Saylor, Bruce (stuart)

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Saylor, Bruce (stuart)

Saylor, Bruce (Stuart), American composer and teacher; b. Philadelphia, April 24, 1946. He studied composition with Weisgall and Sessions at the Juilliard School of Music in N.Y. (B.Mus., 1968; M.S., 1969). In 1969–70 he held a Fulbright grant and pursued his training with Petrassi at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome. In 1970 he entered the Graduate School of the City Univ. of N.Y. and studied composition with Perle and theory with Salzer, taking his Ph.D. in 1978. He taught at Queens Coll. of the City Univ. of N.Y. (1970–76) and at N.Y.U. (1976–79). In 1979 he returned to Queens Coll., where he became a prof. at the Aaron Copland School of Music. He also served on the faculty of the Graduate School of the City Univ. of N.Y. from 1983. From 1992 to 1994 he was composer-in-residence of the Lyric Opera of Chicago, which gave the premiere of his opera Orpheus Descending on June 10, 1994. He received grants from the NEA (1976, 1978), the Ives scholarship (1976) and an award (1983) from the American Academy and Inst. of Arts and Letters, a Guggenheim fellowship (1982–83), and the Ingram Merrill Foundation Award (1991). He is married to the mezzo-soprano Constance Beavon, who has performed many of his vocal works.


DRAMATIC: My Kinsman, Major Molineux, opera (Pittsburgh, Aug. 28, 1976); Cycle, dance piece (Chilmark, Mass., July 27, 1978; rev. version, Chilmark, Mass., July 24, 1980); Inner World Out, dance piece (Chilmark, Mass., Aug. 30, 1978); Wildfire, dance piece (Chilmark, Mass., Aug. 29, 1979; rev. version as Wildfire II, N.Y., April 2, 1985); The Waves, 3 dramatic monologues for Mezzo-soprano and 5 Instruments (Chilmark, Mass., Aug. 27, 1981; rev. version, Paris, Nov. 18, 1985); Spill, dance piece (N.Y., May 10, 1984); Voices from Sandover, incidental music (N.Y., May 23, 1989); Orpheus Descending, opera (Chicago, June 10, 1994). orch.: Cantilena for Strings (N.Y., May 1965); Notturno for Piano and Orch. (1969); Turns and Mordents, flute concerto (New Haven, Conn., March 6, 1977); Symphony in 2 Parts (1980; Houston, Feb. 6, 1981); Archangel for Antiphonal Brass Quartet and Orch. (San Francisco, May 20, 1990); Supernova for Concert Band (Lancaster, Pa., Nov. 6, 1992). chamber: Woodwind Quintet (1965; Sunnyside, N.Y., March 21, 1992); Suite for Viola (1967); Duo for Violin and Viola (Rome, May 12, 1970); Conductus for 3 Winds, 3 Strings, and Percussion (Rome, May 1970); Firescreen for Flute, Cello, and Piano (N.Y., Nov. 1, 1979); St. Ulmo’s Fire for Flute and Harp (N.Y., March 16, 1980); Fire-Flaught for Flute, Bassoon, and Harp (1982); State Trumpets for Organ and Brass (Lattingtown, N.Y., Sept. 23, 1982; also for Organ); Carillon Te Deum for Bells (Ithaca, N.Y., June 29, 1983); Fanfare for Double Brass Quintet (N.Y., Nov. 14, 1983); Soggetti I for Flute (Paris, Nov. 18, 1985) and II for Flute and Harpsichord (N.Y., May 11, 1986); Electro: A translation for Viola, Contrabass, and Piano (Minneapolis, May 11, 1986); Trio for Clarinet, Viola, and Piano (Washington, D.C., June 20, 1989); Fanfares and Echoes for Horn and String Trio (Paris, Nov. 28, 1992). keyboard: Piano : 5 Short Pieces (1965–67; N.Y., April 16, 1969); Saltarello (Paris, Nov. 18, 1981); Quattro Passi (1991; N.Y., Sept. 16, 1992). Organ: Ricercare and Sinfonia (1965, 1969; N.Y, Aug. 22, 1971); State Trumpets (Rome, May 22, 1983; also for Organ and Brass). vocal: 5 Songs from “Whispers of Heav’nly Death” for Soprano and String Quartet (1965–67); To Winter and To Autumn for Soloists, Chorus, and Orch. (1968); 3 Collects for Mezzo-soprano and Organ (1968); Benedictus es for Chorus and Organ (1969); 2 Yiddish Folksongs for Tenor, Chorus, and Piano, 4-Hands (1969); Lyrics for Soprano and Violin (1970; N.Y., Nov. 13, 1971); Loveplay for Mezzo-soprano, Flute, and Viola (N.Y., Nov. 18, 1975; also for Voice, Flute, and Cello, N.Y., Jan. 30, 1977); 4 Psalms for Voice and Flute (1976–78); Songs from Water Street for Mezzo-soprano, Viola, and Piano (Washington, D.C., May 10, 1980); Swimming by Night for Mezzo-soprano, Viola, and Piano (1980; N.Y., Jan. 25, 1982); Te Deum for Chorus and Organ (N.Y., Oct. 23, 1982); 5 Old Favorites for Voice, Flute, and Piano (1983; N.Y., Jan. 22, 1984); It Had Wings for Voice and Piano (Rome, April 12, 1984; also for Voice and Orch., N.Y., Nov. 3, 1991); Psalm 23 for Voice and Oboe (McLean, Va., Aug. 17, 1985; also for Chorus and Instruments obbligato (N.Y, Nov. 15, 1987); See You in the Morning for Soprano and 6 Instruments (N.Y, Feb. 22, 1987); Mass of the Holy Trinity for Congregation, Chorus, Organ, and Brass (Paris, June 14, 1987); jubilate Fantasy for Soprano, Chorus, and Orch. (Paris, Dec. 19, 1990); Behold that Star for Soprano and String Quartet (Paris, Dec. 19, 1990); Star of Wonder, Christmas cantata for Soprano, Children’s Chorus, String Quartet, and Harp (Paris, Dec. 19, 1990); 3 Spirituals for Soprano and Chorus (Paris, Dec. 19, 1990); The Star Song for Mezzo-soprano, Chorus, and Orch. (Rome, Sept. 25, 1992); Honor, Honor, spiritual for Soprano and Chorus (N.Y, May 3, 1993; also for Voice and Piano, Chicago, Aug. 11, 1993); Angels for Mezzo-soprano, Flute, Cello, and Piano (N.Y, May 11, 1993); Canticle of Blessing for Chorus, Brass, Percussion, and Organ (Flushing, N.Y, May 17, 1994); In Praise of Jerusalem for Chorus, 3 Brass Ensembles, and Organ (1994); Song of Ascent for Chorus, 3 Trumpets, and Organ (1994; Chicago, Jan. 29, 1995); Magnificat for Voice, Flute, and Guitar (Chicago, Feb. 13, 1995); By the Power of Your Love for 3 Women’s Voices and Chorus (Chicago, March 12, 1995).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire