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Classical 101

Aaron Copland: The American Sound Defined

Boyce Lancaster talks with Maestro Albert-George Schram, former staff conductor of the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, about composer Aaron Copland, whose famous compositions he wrote in the 1920s and 30s -- including Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid, Rodeo and Fanfare for the Common Man -- stand as the epitome of the American sound. [audio src="http://wosu.org/audio/classical/2006/Aaron_Copland.mp3"]

Highlights From This Interview:

Boyce: "Copeland really is the quintessential American sound. When you think of American music, certainly Gershwin comes to mind, and other composers. But when you hear the first chords of 'Buckaroo Holiday,' it just has that feel to it." Albert-George: "We had a European culture here, and that was shaken up - the symphonic culture, the musical culture. It was really European roots everywhere. Americans tried to imitate (Richard) Wagner and (Felix) Mendelssohn. And then they got (Carl) Ruggles and (Charles) Ives, who were so radical, but they did shake the thing loose. They were the first ones who tried to create an art that was specifically American. And then Copeland was the next generation."