thumbnail of The Music of Don Gillis II; Waltz of Sorts and more
Hide -
If this transcript has significant errors that should be corrected, let us know, so we can add it to FIX IT+
You're listening to music by Don Gillis. Each week I stand up in front of this microphone and say that you were listening to the music of Don Gill as I say. And then I had brought to you by the national educational radio network. I always try to make it interesting and therefore sit many an hour in front of a typewriter trying to write the exact words that will be just right for each and every moment of the show. But you know no matter how many times I do this sort of thing I'm still not quite used to it. And I always have a sort of self-conscious ring to my voice in a sense it's like showing you pictures of my granddaughter or reading you my reviews. But maybe that's the right way to do it. I know I'd feel even more self-conscious if I bragged on what I write in a sort of dictionary immortality column. So I pretend most of the time that there's only two of us you and me. And I pretend further that we're over at my house and have just settled on the sofa to listen to a tape or so of stuff I've written. So if you're ready to settle back on the
sofa I'll turn on the music and when you ask me what we're going to do on this seventh broadcast I can say on quaveringly that we're going to hear two movements from two separate symphonies a movement for wood wind quintet. And a piece for band. You can then say and it begins with and I reply with the third movement of my dance symphony titled waltz of sorts. And you say well let's hear it. And I say OK and so we do. With. With. With. With. The. With the Earth. With the. Moon.
With. Regard. To. The rants of sorts was the rather rambunctious way rocking music to open our show which we call for want of a better name. Music by Don give us the score was part of my dance and for me the third movement to be exact. Next we're going to hear music for a quintet of woodwinds. And it's to be played for us by the Interlochen Arts Academy woodwind quintet The title is self-portrait and as I listen to it now I'm still trying to figure
out just why I named it that for I really don't look at all like this music sounds. This is much more handsome for one thing and much younger too. But here it is an autograph it for you after the program self-portrait.
Self Portrait. The first movement of my second suite for woodwind wouldn't it has just been played for us by the Interlochen Arts Academy faculty woodwind quintet under the direction of Don Jaeger. The next music we will hear is for band part of this week titled The land of wheat in this section we're here it's the time in between the planning and the harvest. Those porch swing days and hammock days those fishing and whittling days. The Michigan State University symphonic band under the baton of the composer played it for its now lazy days from land of wheat.
The music was lazy days from land of wheat. The band was from Michigan State University. The occasion is music by Don Gillis. We continue now as we hear the first movement of my Symphony Number five one written during the years of World War 2 which bears the subtitle in memoriam for those of you who may be hearing the score for the first time. Let me take a minute or so to give you a sort of guided tour to the music. There are several thematic ideas which are used and of course the composer generally States his main themes in the first part of the work much like a preacher announces the text for his sermon. This is called the exposition or the statement of the subject matter to be discussed. Then after the themes are stated he spends time in the development of his ideas or using the analogy of the public speaker again explaining and arguing or defending and justifying. Finally when he has stated his case he will sum up coming back to a restatement a recapitulation of his main ideas or themes
in the first move of my symphony I use this broad three part outline of the so-called sonata form and we're going to hear some of the thematic material so that you will be able to follow along like a full fledged music critic or professional musicologist. The first theme you'll hear is one which forms the basis of not only the first movement but acts as a catalyst of ideas for the entire score. Oh OK. Here are still another theme which I use in the first movement of my fifth symphony and you will notice that it has a resemblance to the first theme at least in mood.
One of my main themes occurs only in the development section. It is lyrical in character and it has within itself a complete unity but also its an outgrowth of material which has been previously used. The. Inner. The composer's task is to take his melodic ideas or themes and organize them logically within the framework of his form to achieve a unified musical idea. We'll listen now to the complete movement and see how these themes were used to express my own ideas of Laghman Tayshaun of Requiem for the lives of young Americans who died in battle in World War 2. Here then the first movement of my Symphony Number five subtitled in memoriam played for us now at the National High School orchestra in Iraq and conducted by Henri and Ali.
Koch. The. Only one.
Cute little. World.
With with with the playing of the first movement of my Symphony Number five of the National High School orchestra conducted by Henri and Dolly we have come to the end of another broadcast of music by Don DeLillo's. Earlier we heard waltz of sorts from the band symphony self-portrait from my second woodwind quintet and lazy days from the land of wheat. Next week we're going to hear two scores. Paul Bunyan an overture to a legend. And then Atlanta five choreographic impressions of a Southern city. Now before we close this microphonic session a personal word. I am pleased with your response to my music and will admit to those of you who think a contemporary composers should be a bit more avant garde than I that I indeed am not and avant garde
Please note: This content is only available at GBH and the Library of Congress, either due to copyright restrictions or because this content has not yet been reviewed for copyright or privacy issues. For information about on location research, click here.
The Music of Don Gillis II
Waltz of Sorts and more
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
If you have more information about this item than what is given here, or if you have concerns about this record, we want to know! Contact us, indicating the AAPB ID (cpb-aacip/500-251fnw3p).
Episode Description
This program features performances of the following Gillis compositions: Waltz of Sorts; and In Memoriam.
Other Description
This series features the works of Don Gillis; hosted by the composer himself. Most of the performances are conducted by the composer.
Broadcast Date
Media type
Composer: Gillis, Don, 1912-1978
Host: Gillis, Don, 1912-1978
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 65-36-7 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:29:37
If you have a copy of this asset and would like us to add it to our catalog, please contact us.
Chicago: “The Music of Don Gillis II; Waltz of Sorts and more,” 1965-10-21, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed August 17, 2022,
MLA: “The Music of Don Gillis II; Waltz of Sorts and more.” 1965-10-21. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. August 17, 2022. <>.
APA: The Music of Don Gillis II; Waltz of Sorts and more. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from