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You're listening to the music of Don give us. This is Don do us welcome once again to another broadcast devoted entirely to my music brought you wrote the national educational radio network. On this program we're going to hear the poem for obal and strings I think upon with Don Yeager a soloist the man who invented music with Jack killed his narrator and our concert begins as we hear ranch house party from Portrait of a frontier town. We'll
wait. We'll wait. Wait. In a. Way I. Am. I
am. I am. Going to. The EU. Ill. Cut. Will. Ranch house party from Portrait of a frontier town played by the Royal Philharmonic in London
was the opening music on this the second program of this special series devoted to the music of Don Gillis. And I'm glad you're back with us actually it's a bit awkward for me to keep saying that the composer was done goes or such and such a work was conducted by the composer especially when I say the composer I'm also here acting as your announcer on this series. So pardon what seems to be either excessive modesty or excessive modesty to pending upon your point of view. As I try to act in a many faceted capacity on these broadcasts right now. First be the program annotator and then announce that Don Yeager a member of the faculty of the Interlochen Arts Academy and former member of both the Dallas and concert orchestras is going to be the soloist and work which I wrote for oboe and an orchestra consisting of strings pianist Celeste harp and percussion. This performance you'll hear is by the university orchestra at national music camp under the baton of Dr. and Clyde roller. The music was written about my hometown of Cameron Missouri and while it is not directly programmatic
it does reflect nostalgically about my boyhood days in the old swimming hole just outside of town. The five acre pond. A.
Lot. The only thing.
Don Yeager was soloist as Doctor A Kite Runner conductor the university orchestra to
Interlochen and a poem for oboe and strings five acre pond for our major work we're going to hear a score initially for my daughter Caroline get was when she was five years old and she's now almost 20 will give you some idea of the age of the piece. I wrote the story for her and her small friends and then with an assist from Clarence Ross at the end the script department developed it into a work for narrator and orchestra and it was first performed by the NBC symphony end of the town of Tal Dorati with Nelson Armstead narrating during the US steel series. One hundred forty nine. I can't recall exactly what the critics said about it most of them seem to like it I think but most gratifying of all was the public's response so much response in fact that it was soon scheduled to be recorded by a London Records. And I found myself in Kingsway Hall in London with the new symphony orchestra under my baton and a very fine young American singer Jack Kilby to be my narrator. It was my first recording experience baton in hand up to then I had been in the control room on set
sessions and it was an unaccustomed feeling to have someone else telling me when to start and go whether to play certain passages louder or softer and to stop the orchestra to remind me gently and perfect Oxfordian accent to please stop hitting the microphone with my baton. The orchestra was wonderful and the engineering staff extremely good. And when I returned to this country to hear the finished product. Well I was very happy that my daughter had sparked the whole idea with a request for a bedtime story a story that finally became the man who invented music. The story is you may recall a rather Texas sized proof of the type of Kitty's piece that gets played at Children's concerts to teach them all about the instruments. But the funny thing is that what started out to be a tongue in cheek satire has turned out to be a standard item itself on children's concerts and even stranger adults seem to like it even more than the children. I hope you enjoy it. The man who invented music. I know I do.
When it's bed time. Pick up your toys and hop into bed. Please go to sleep when. Grandfather was the babysitter for the
evening and he would have much rather than playing checkers. Go to sleep Wednesday. When Dave was 4 when she had an answer for granted. It was a man's a carefully thought out. Complete and final. No not until you tell me a story. A story instead. Their. Grandfather was still thinking about it. Come on Grandfather I'll sing you a lullaby. Then you go to sleep. Probably not. Besides you don't know anyway. Tell me a story instead. I don't know when I'm with my.
Wendy laugh. And the people. Who laugh so hard the stuffing nearly came out of them. Please Wendy. You never go to sleep if you keep laughing. I never go to sleep if you try to sing grandpa. Tell me a story. Tell me how you invented music. Well once upon a time about four million years ago the world was a
dark and happy place. The sun rose hopefully every morning. Changed his mind then went back to bed. The birds didn't sing. They had nothing to sing. The bells didn't ring. They had nothing to ring. Nobody could dance. There was nothing to dance to. No drum majors pranced. There was nothing to prance to. Nobody whistled. Not even a pretty girl. And worst of all the children never went to singing. No one no life so they just ride. Ride. And ride. In the Sun happy time they lived a great inventor your grandfather. Invented lots of good things for children like dolls and pops and chocolate milk. But still they weren't happy. I tried to figure out why but the kids cried so much that I just couldn't hear myself think.
So one day I decided to go out into the woods to build a new house where it would be quiet. I took my bow and arrow got into my car and drove on to the edge of town. Well this looks like a good place I said. But when I started to chop down a tree with my axe there was a funny sound. I hit another tree and there was a funnier sound. And then I heard a bunch of trees. And it sounded so good. I said to myself if this good what will happen if I hit this big rock. Pretty good I think I'll try another one. Even better now another one. Try them all together.
And so while I was at it I just decided to go ahead and invent radio 2 or. I had a busy morning. I hit around on sticks and stones and the khoya knew what I was on the track of inventing music. So I rushed home got my signed and then to work did not understand it and started inventing as fast as I first. I invented the flute. Next the bowl. But then I decided it would take too long like this. I better invent them in bunches
clarinets bass clarinets and I said get invented. And they did. And after the woodwinds I invented the trumpets. Next. I invented the French horns. On the slide. And finally about.
To change that a little. Bend of the strings at all. If it hadn't been for the old tom cat howling in the corner. Yeah. The. Good stuff cotton in your ears. There was one. One. And the viola and the
cellos. And the basses. But that wasn't all I needed I had to have sharps and flats and it's a condo old Tolentino and staccato. Trouble clever red tied with the Allegro code and they just managed to get all this scared soul down deep jazz and Schmalz jukebox drumstick and the tongs and Toscanini. And when I put them all together you see. No policy bending made so much noise that people from miles around.
And since they all look like they want to stay somewhere I had to figure out some way to get there so I said Abracadabra. But they didn't. Then I said well there's pocus but they stay right there. And finally I had a big idea. I said January February March. And sure enough the first music my instruments played was a march. But then something terrible happens when the people learned to march. Somebody started a war. The only way I could think to stop it was music.
Right. And everybody had a wonderful time dancing but they got tired dancing. I had to figure out a way to let them rest. I invented the symphony concert with music critic on every roll. With the bells ringing. And the thing
was still missing. And I couldn't imagine what it was until I heard the children crying. Oh. And. Happen. Instead of.
And and. And. Again she asked for a story. The man who invented music with Jack killed his narrator and the new symphony of London conducted by the composer has been the final music on this the second program of the music of Don Gill is brought to you each week at this time by the national educational radio network. Earlier we heard ranch house party from Portrait of a frontier town and five acre pond with
Dr. A Clyde roller conducting the university orchestra to Interlochen with Don Yeager as our oboe soloist next week will hear music written for a band and the program will include recipe and rhythm. Uncle waltz waltz and still another work for narrator and downbeat. This latter score is again an example of music for fun and examines in detail and the conductors function with a band or orchestra I must hastily add that it doesn't examine it just exactly as you might expect to read it in Grove's Dictionary of Music. But then downbeat does have its moment of truth and wisdom. Personally I like bands very much. I had my musical upbringing in bands was a band director myself a DCU for a number of years and have written extensively for the band and all of its forms I wrote an opera. Title pep rally scored it for bam stead of for orchestra. And of course Britain's sweets and symphonies and even one concerto for organ and band. Next week I'll try to tell you some my theories on band writing that are still wanting to join and sing with the
band music you hear into it's own terrorizing. This program was produced and recorded for the national educational radio network by Riverdale productions under the technical supervision of John Corbett. This is Don Gillis thanking for being with us so long. This is the national educational radio network.
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The music of Don Gillis
Ranch House Party and more
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program features performances of Don Gillis' work "Ranch House Party" and more.
Series 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: 64-24-2 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:29:35
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Chicago: “The music of Don Gillis; Ranch House Party and more,” 1964-06-18, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 16, 2024,
MLA: “The music of Don Gillis; Ranch House Party and more.” 1964-06-18. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 16, 2024. <>.
APA: The music of Don Gillis; Ranch House Party 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