Yttrehus, Rolv (Berger)

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Yttrehus, Rolv (Berger)

YttrehuS, Rolv (Berger), American composer and teacher; b. Duluth, March 12, 1926. He was educated at the Univ. of Minn, in Duluth (B.S. in music, 1950), the Univ. of Mich. (M.M., 1953), and the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome (diploma, 1962). His mentors in composition were Ross Lee Finney (1950-53), Roger Sessions (1957-60), Aaron Copland (1958), and Goffredo Petrassi (1960-62). He also received instruction in harmony from Nadia Boulanger (1954-55). He taught at the Univ. of Mo. (1963-68), Purdue Univ. (1968-69), the Univ. of Wise, in Oshkosh (1969-77), and Rutgers, the State Univ. of N.J. (1977-96), where he subsequently was prof, emeritus. Yttrehus’s music has been performed on both sides of the Atlantic, and frequently in N.Y. by various ensembles. Schoenberg and Sessions have been principal influences on his works, which may be characterized as dramatic and rhythmically energetic. He uses the 12 tone system in his explorations of what he refers to as the two energies of music: the rhythmic energy of upbeat-downbeat and shifted accents, and the harmonic-melodic energy of dissonance.


orch: Overture (1952); Fantasy (1953); Espressioni (1962); Sym. No. 1 (1995; rev. version, Warsaw, Sept. 1998). Band: Prelude, 1950 (1950). CHAMBER: Cosmophography for 4 Clarinets (1948); Violin Sonata (1951); Duo for Violin and Viola (1954); Quartet for Flute and Strings (1955); 2 Movements for String Quartet (1960); Music for Winds, Percussion, and Viola (1961); Sextet for Horn, Trumpet, Violin, Double Bass, Piano, and Percussion (1964-70; rev. 1974); Music for Winds, Percussion, Cello, Voices, and Tape (1969); Quintet for Flute, Clarinet, Violin, Cello, and Piano (1973); Percussion Sonata (1983; rev. 1988); Cello Sonata (1988); Plectrum Spectrum for Chamber Group (2000). KEYBOARD: Piano:6 Pieces (1957); Explorations (1985); Raritan Variation (1989). VOCAL: 6 Haiku for Soprano, Flute, Cello, and Harp (1959); Angstwagen for Soprano and Percussion (1971; rev. 1981); Gradus ad Parnas-sum for Soprano, Chamber Orch., and Tape, after Nietzsche and J.J. Fux (1974-79).

—Nicholas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire