|David Manship Hollister was born May 1,
1929 in New York City, into a musical family, and began playing the piano
when he was six years old. His father, Carroll Morton Hollister was the
accompanist for John Charles Thomas, “America’s Favorite Baritone,” who
hosted the “Westinghouse Hour” radio show. His mother was Ruth Evelyn (Manship)
Hollister attended Harvard College where he earned a B.A. in American History (1951), but did however take some music theory courses. He toured Russia and China in the 1950s with a student group, which inspired him to continue his musical studies. He earned a doctorate in music from the University of Iowa (1968), and later was given a post-doctoral grant to travel and study the avant-garde music of Poland in 1968.
He married Barbara Witriol March 22, 1964.
He studied composition with Irving Fine, Darius Milhaud, Wallingford Riegger, Henry Brant, Richard Hervig, and jazz with Charles Mingus. His string orchestra piece "Corronach" based on the Holocaust, was performed by the New Orleans Symphony Orchestra, and two string quartets were recorded on Opus One records.
He composed in many different genres including ballets, musical theater, concert works, films, and worked with (among others) choreographer Paul Taylor, and avant-garde filmmaker, Hilary Harris. In addition he was commissioned or had works premiered by the Spoleto and Aspen Festivals, Washington Camerata Orchestra, the American Chamber Ensemble, and the Medicine Show Theater.
His teaching positions included assistant professor of music at the University New Orleans, 1968-1970, York College, City University of New York, Jamaica, 1970-1973, Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York, 1978-1985, adjunct associate professor Baruch College, City University of New York, New York City, 1974-1990, Kingsborough Community College, 1988-1991, John Jay College, City University of New York, 1991-1992, and member of the faculty of the New School Social Research, New York City, 1985-1990, and adjunct associate professor Long Island University, since 1991.
Hollister died late in 2014.
Kenneth Koch (February 27, 1925 – July 6, 2002) was an American poet, playwright, and professor, active from the 1950s until his death at age 77. He was a prominent poet of the New York School of poetry. This was a loose group of poets that eschewed contemporary introspective poetry in favor of an exuberant, cosmopolitan style that drew major inspiration from travel, painting, and music.
Koch (pronounced coke) began writing poetry at an early age, discovering the work of Shelley and Keats in his teenage years. At the age of 18, he served in WWII as a U.S. Army infantryman in the Philippines.
After his service, he attended Harvard University, where he graduated in 1948 and moved to New York City. He received his Ph.D. from Columbia University.
He and his wife lived in France and Italy for over a year, and in
1959 he joined the faculty in the Department of English and Comparative
Literature at Columbia. He taught classes at Columbia for over forty years.
* * * *
*Bertha is an opera in one act, with music by Ned Rorem
to an English libretto by Kenneth Koch, an original work parodying Shakespeare's
histories. Rorem wrote the work originally at the request of the Metropolitan
Opera Studio in the 1960s, intended as an opera for children. However,
the Met Studio rejected the work. The work was premiered at Alice Tully
Hall in New York City on November 25, 1973 with Beverly Wolff in the title
|4'33" is the work in which the performer
(usually a pianist, but any combination according to the score) remains silent
for the allotted time. As it happened, I performed it on April 1 in
two successive years on WNIB, Classical 97 in Chicago. For the record,
I did not simply leave all the volume controls at zero, thus sending
out a silent signal. Since the idea of Cage was to pay attention to
the ambient sound in the hall, I announced the piece, and then left the microphone
open, so that listeners would hear the goings-on in the studio. I moved
about, got up and down from the squeaky chair, gathered the news from the
teletype machine (!), and answered the phone when calls came in. The
radio audience heard my side of the conversations. I also brought in
a kitchen timer which I placed by the microphone so the loud ticking could
be heard, and which went DING at approximately four and a half minutes, signaling
the end of the performance. I then sat down, rustled my papers, cleared
my throat, back-announced the work, and continued on with the scheduled programming.
Comments from listeners were all very positive. BD
© 1988 Bruce Duffie
This conversation was recorded at Hollister’s home in New York City, on March 25, 1988. Portions were broadcast on WNIB the following year, and again in 1994 and 1999. This transcription was made in 2019, and posted on this website at that time. My thanks to British soprano Una Barry for her help in preparing this website presentation.
To see a full list (with links) of interviews which have been transcribed and posted on this website, click here.
Award - winning broadcaster Bruce Duffie was with WNIB, Classical 97 in Chicago from 1975 until its final moment as a classical station in February of 2001. His interviews have also appeared in various magazines and journals since 1980, and he now continues his broadcast series on WNUR-FM.You are invited to visit his website for more information about his work, including selected transcripts of other interviews, plus a full list of his guests. He would also like to call your attention to the photos and information about his grandfather, who was a pioneer in the automotive field more than a century ago. You may also send him E-Mail with comments, questions and suggestions.