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PostClassical- Copland and the Cold War

Listening Guide

PART I – Copland the modernist turns populist
6:30 – Copland the wild man: Piano Variations (1930), performed by Benjamin Pasternack on Naxos
22:00 – Copland speaks at a Communist picnic in Minnesota (1934)
28:00 –  “Into the Streets” (1934), Copland’s prize-winning workers’ song for The New Masses
32:00 – Copland becomes a film composer: The City (1939), espousing government-funded “new towns” with happy workers. From PCE’s Naxos DVD.
52:00 – The famous lunch counter scene from The City, in which Copland prefigures Philip Glass
59:00  -- “Sunday Traffic” from The City

Part 2- Copland and The Cold War

PART II – Copland the populist returns to modernism
3:00 – Copland in Hollywood: The Red Pony
11:30 – Copland is interrogated by Senator Joseph McCarthy (1953)
18:00 – Giving up on the “new audience” he once courted, Copland composes a non-tonal valedictory: The Piano Fantasy (1957), performed by Benjamin Pasternack on Naxos

David Osenberg is WWFM Partnership Manager, WWFM Music Director, Afternoon Host, and Host of award-winning Cadenza.