24 October 1976, afternoon – Concert of the American Section Highlighting Canadian Composers
Serge Garant (Canada, b. 1929; d. 1986): Offrandes III for 3 violoncellos, 2 harps, piano, and 2 percussionists (1971) [16′];
Bruce Mather (Canada, b. 1939): Madrigal III [text: Hector de Saint-Denys Garneau] for alto, harp, piano, and marimba (1971) [23′];
Robert Aitken (Canada, b. 1939): Lalitá: Shadows II for solo flute, 3 violoncellos, 2 harps, and 2 percussionists (1973) [11′] featuring the composer on flute;
Gilles Tremblay (Canada, b. 1932; d. 2017): … de sifflement des vents, porteurs de l’amour… for flute and percussion (1975) [17′];
R. Murray Schafer (Canada, b. 1933; d. 2021): Arcana for voice, flute (=+piccolo), clarinet, trumpet, trombone, violin, violoncello, double bass, harp, piano (=+electric organ), and percussion (1972) [18′].
24 October 1976, evening – orchestra concert
Vittorio Fellegara (Italy, b. 1927; d. 2011): Chanson [text: Paul Éluard] for soprano and ensemble (1974) [11′];
Oliver Knussen (United Kingdom [England], b. 1952 in Scotland; d. 2018): Symphony No. 2 [text: Georg Trakl & Sylvia Plath] for high soprano and small orchestra (1971) [17′] featuring Christine Noel Whittlesay;
Josef Maria Horváth (Austria, b. 1931 Hungary; d. 2019) Origines for chamber orchestra (1975) [15′];
Harrison Birtwistle (United Kingdom [England], b. 1934; d. 2022): Meridian [text: Christopher Logue & Thomas Wyatt] for mezzo-soprano, 2 female choirs and 13 instrumentalists (1970-71) [27′].
25 October 1976, afternoon – SMCQ Ensemble and members of New Music Concerts of Toronto
Yoshirō Vladimir Irino (Japan, b. 1921 in Russia; d. 1980): Strömung for flute, harp, and percussion (1973) [11′];
John Hawkins (Canada, b. 1944; d. 2007): Etudes for two pianos (1974) [12′] performed by Bruce Mather and Pierrette LePage +;
Daniel Börtz (Sweden, b. 1943): Nightflies [text: Tomas Tranströmer, sung in English translation] for mezzo-soprano, clarinet, trombone, electric organ, piano, and violoncello (1975) [8′] +;
Carmelo Bernaola (Spain [Basque Country], b. 1929; d. 2002): Argia Ezta Ikusten (La luz que no se vè) for clarinet, vibraphone, percussion, and piano (1972-73) [7′];
Alfredo del Mónaco (Venezuela, b. 1938; d. 2015): Solentiname for flute, clarinet, violin, violoncello, piano, and 3 percussionists (1972-73) [7′] +;
Rolv Yttrehus (United States, b. 1926; d. 2018): Music for Winds, Percussion, ‘Cello and Voices (1969) [12′].
25 October 1976, evening – Twentieth Century Innovations (ensemble directed by Gunther Schuller)
José Antônio Rezende de Almeida Prado (Brazil, b. 1943; d. 2010): Portrait de Lili Boulanger for string quartet, flute, and piano (1972) [20′];
Juan José Iturriberry (Uruguay, b. 1936): Meditacion en Fa for oboe solo (1975) [4′] performed by Nora Post;
Ton de Kruyf (Netherlands, b. 1937; d. 2012): Mosaico for oboe and string trio (1969) with Nora Post;
József Soproni (Hungary, b. 1930; d. 2021): Sonata for Flute and Piano (1971) [9′] performed by Trudy Kane and Robert Miller;
Leonard Rosenman (United States, b. 1924; d. 2008): Chamber Music No. 2 [Text: Federico García Lorca, sung in English translation] for high soprano, 10 instrumentalists, and tape (1968) [20′] conducted by the composer.
26 October 1976, afternoon – New England Conservatory Contemporary Music Ensemble conducted by Gunther Schuller
In-Chan Choi (South Korea, b. 1923; d. 2009): Drei Bilder von Li Tai-Bo [text: Li Bai, sung in German] for voice, flute, harp, violoncello, and percussion +;
Milan Stibilj (Yugoslavia [Slovenia], b. 1929; d. 2014): Indijansko poletje [Indian Summer] for flute, clarinet, violin, double-bass, and percussion (1974);
Anders Eliasson (Sweden, b. 1947; d. 2013): Disegno per Sestetto d’Ottoni for brass sextet (1975) [7′] [world premiere] +;
Josef Tal (Israel, b. 1910 in Germany [now Poland]; d. 2008): Else (Hommage) [text by Else Lasker-Schueler] sung by Cheryl Cobb and narrated by Robert J. Lurtsema;
Tzvi Avni (Israel, b. 1927 in Germany): Zwei Stücke for 4 clarinets [world premiere];
José Ramón Maranzano (Argentina, b. 1940): Pequeño Triptico for two pianos and four percussionists (1966);
Stefan Wolpe (United States, 1902 (in Germany)-1972): Piece for Trumpet and Seven Instruments (1971) [8′] featuring trumpeter John Carroll.
26 October 1976, evening – University of Iowa Symphony Orchestra conducted by James Dixon
Erik Norby (Denmark, b. 1936; d. 2007): Regnbueslangen [The Rainbow Snake] for orchestra (1975) [17′] +;
Jim Grimm (Switzerland, b. 1928; d. 2006): Entropies for orchestra;
Anthony Payne (United Kingdom [England], b. 1936; d. 2021): Concerto for Orchestra (1974) [21′] +;
Sukhi Kang (South Korea, b. 1934; d. 2020): Catena for orchestra (1975) [10′].
27 October 1976, 2:00pm – Pro Arte String Quartet and Cleveland Quartet in Jordan Hall
Tadeáš Salva (Czechoslovakia [Slovakia], b. 1937; d. 1995): String Quartet IIIb (1972) [13′];
René Koering (France, b. 1940): Piano Sonata (1976) [24′];
Robert Pollock (United States, b. 1946): Geometrics for string quartet (1974) [12′];
Thomas Kessler (Switzerland, b. 1937): Piano Control for piano and synthesizer (1974) [16′] performed by Robert Black;
Richard Meale (Australia, b. 1932; d. 2009): String Quartet (No. 1) (1974) [18′] +;
27 October 1976, 8:30pm – Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Seiji Ozawa in Symphony Hall
John Cage (United States, b. 1912; d. 1992): Renga (1975-76) with Apartment House 1776 (1976) [c. 30-40′] + featuring Nico Castel, Jeanne Lee, Helen Schneyer, and Chief Swift Eagle;
Nikos Mamangakis (Greece, b. 1929; d. 2013): Anarchia for five timpani and orchestra (1971) [14′] featuring percussionist Dean Anderson;
Seymour Shifrin (United States, b. 1926; d. 1979): Chronicles (1970) [26′] performed with the New England Conservatory Chorus [world premiere].
28 October 1976
Emilio Mendoza (Venezuela, b. 1953): Alborada for viola and piano (1975);
John Exton (Australia, b. 1933 in the United Kingdom [England]; d. 2009): String Quartet No. 6 (1974) [11′] performed by the Purcell Quartet;
Usko Meriläinen (Finland, b. 1930; d. 2004): Piano Sonata No. 4 ‘Epyllion II’ (1974) [27′] + performed by Robert Black;
Magne Hegdal (Norway, b. 1944): Air: For a Gothic Cathedral for soprano, piano, marimba, and timpani (1975) [13′] + sung by Christine Noel Whittlesey;
John Fodi (Canada, b. 1944 in Hungary; d. 2009): Concerto a Quattro (1973) [14′] performed by the Purcell Quartet.
29 October 1976, afternoon – concert presented by the American section
Paul Lansky (United States, b. 1944): Crossworks for flute, clarinet, violin, violoncello, and piano (1976) [14′];
George Perle (United States, b. 1915; d. 2009): Six Etudes for piano (1976) [10′] performed by Morey Ritt [world premiere];
John Huggler (United States, b. 1928; d. 1993): Bittere Nüsse (text: Paul Celan) for soprano, flute, clarinet (=+bass clarinet), violin, viola, and violoncello;
John Heiss (United States, b. 1938): Songs of Nature [texts by Bryant, Dickinson, Longfellow, Thoreau] for mezzo-soprano, flute, clarinet, violin, violoncello, and piano (1974-75) [15′];
T. J. Anderson (United States, b. 1928): Block Songs [text: Pearl Cleage Lomax] for soprano, children’s toys (commercial musical busy box), chromatic pitch pipe, and jack-in-the-box (1972) [12′];
John Harbison (United States, b. 1938): Six Dumbshows for flute, clarinet, violin, violoncello, and piano (1974; subsequently incorporated into Winter’s Tale, completed in 1979) [12′].
29 October 1976, evening – electronic music concert *
Knut Wiggen (Sweden, b. 1927 in Norway; d. 2016): Resa for computer (1972) [10′];
Enrique Raxach (Netherlands, b. 1932 in Spain): Chimaera for bass clarinet and tape (1974) [10′] performed by Harry Sparnaay;
Pierre Barbaud (France, b. 1911 in Algeria; d. 1990): Ars recte computandi [Art of Correct Calculation] (1975) [16′] **;
Vladan Radovanović (Yugoslavia [Serbia], b. 1932): Electra for tape (1974) [10′];
André Laporte (Belgium [Flanders], b. 1931): Harry’s Wonderland for bass clarinet and 2 tapes (1976) [13′] performed by Harry Sparnaay;
Benjamin Boretz (United States, b. 1934): Group Variations II, Version 1, for computer (1972) [12′].
* a co-presentation with the First International Conference on Computer Music at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (28-31 October 1976)
** credited to the collective BBK [which consisted by Barbaud, engineer Frank Brown, and computer scientist Geneviève Klein)
30 October 1976, afternoon – Concert presented by the American section
Donald Sur (United States, b. 1935; d. 1999): Catena (I, II & III) for flute, bass clarinet, mandolin, violin, viola, violoncello and 2 percussionists (marimba, maracas/suspended cymbal/bongos) (1961-1976) [9′] performed by the Collage Contemporary Ensemble (now known as Collage New Music);
Jacques-Louis Monod (United States, b. 1927 in France; d. 2020 in France): Cantus contra Cantum II for violin and violoncello (1973) [17′] performed by Linda Quan and Mark Shuman [world premiere];
Jacob Druckman (United States, b. 1928; d. 1996): Valentine for solo double-bass (1969) [9′] performed by Lawrence Wolfe;
Ellen Taaffe Zwilich (United States, b. 1939): String Quartet (1974) [15′] performed by the New York String Quartet [world premiere];
Ezra Laderman (United States, b. 1924; d. 2015): Echoes and Anticipation for solo oboe with flute, clarinet, violin, viola, cello, piano, and percussion (1976) performed by Peggy Pearson with the Collage Contemporary Ensemble.
30 October 1976, evening – New England Conservatory Symphony Orchestra conducted by Gunther Schuller
Helmut Lachenmann (West Germany, b. 1935): Fassade for large orchestra (1973) [20′];
David Stock (United States, b. 1939; d. 2015): Inner Space for orchestra (1973) [13′] [world premiere];
Jorge Peixinho (Portugal, b. 1940; d. 1995): Voix for mezzo-soprano and chamber orchestra (1972) [25′] with Beverly Morgan (Mezzo-soprano);
Tristan Keuris (Netherlands, b. 1946; d. 1996): Sinfonia (1972/74) [12′] +;
Bogusław Schaeffer (Poland, b. 1929; d. 2019): Jazz Concerto for 12 musicians and orchestra (1969) [17′].
The following additional works were also scheduled but were not performed
Peter Maxwell Davies (United Kingdom [England], b. 1934; d. 2016): Ave Maris Stella for flute/alto flute, clarinet/basset horn, marimba, piano, viola, and violoncello (1975) [32′];
Friedrich Cerha (Austria, b. 1926): Fasce for large orchestra (1959/74) [25′] +;
Hans- Jürgen von Bose (West Germany, b. 1953): Morphogenesis for orchestra (1976) [19′] +;
Giuseppe Sinopoli (Italy, b. 1946; d. 2001): Opus Ghimel for chamber orchestra (1971) [8′] +.
Works marked with a + were works that had been recommended by the Jury
Other significant interpreters
Vocalists: Elsa Charlston, Mary Morrison, Su Harmon (Soprano), Patricia Rideout, D’Anna Fortunato, Seth McCoy (Tenor), Gregory Reinhart, David Arnold (Baritone).
Pianists: Herbert Henck, Morey Ritt.
Percussionists: Scott Eddlemon, Robin Engleman, Robert Leroux.
Ensembles: Boston Musica Viva, New York New Music Ensemble.
Orchestras: New England Conservatory Repertory Orchestra
Conductors: Serge Garant, Richard Pittman.
Stephen Arnold, “Review of First International Conference on Computer Music, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,” Contact 17 (1977), pp. 35-37.
Richard Dyer, “A Muddled Finale to Music Days,” Boston Globe, November 1, 1976, p. 39 (accessible online via Newspapers.com).
Richard Dyer, “Music fest hails NEC trumpeter,” Boston Globe, October 27, 1976, p. 46 (accessible online via Newspapers.com).
Richard Dyer, “Prado’s Portrait Succeeds,” Boston Globe, October 27, 1976, p. 42 (accessible online via Newspapers.com).
Shirley Fleming, “Notes: 27 Countries Contribute to a Contemporary Music Festival,” The New York Times, May 30, 1976, p. 60 (available online).
Anton Haefeli, Die Internationale Gesellschaft für Neue Musik (IGNM), Ihre Geschichte von 1922 bis zur Gegenwart (Atlantis Musikbuch-Verlag, 1982), pp. 536-538 [in German].
Donal Henahan, “Cage’s Renga’ Gives Lift To Festival of Modern Works,” The New York Times, October 29, 1976, p. 59 (available online).
Donal Henahan, “Festival in Boston: Gray Music,” The New York Times, October 30, 1976, p. 17 (available online).
Hubert S. Howe, Jr., “1976 ISCM World Music Days Take Place in Boston,” The World of Music, Vol. 19, No. 1/2, UNIVERSALS / LE PROBLÈME DESUNIVERSAUX (1977), pp. 154-155 (available online via JSTOR).
Leighton Kerner, “World Music Days: Up from the Wastebasket,” The Village Voice, November 15, 1976, p. 52 (available online here)
Harold C. Schonberg, “Music: Avant‐Gardists Tax Limits,” The New York Times, October 27, 1976, p. 46 (available online).
Gunther Schuller, “A Festival of New Music in Boston,” The New York Times, October 24, 1976, p. 91 (available online).
Jacob Siskind, “Musical boredom in choices,” Gazette (Montreal), October 27, 1976, p. 21 (accessible online via Newspapers.com).
Nicolas Slonimsky, Music Since 1900, Sixth Edition edited by Laura Kuhn (Schirmer Reference, 2001), pp. 682-684.
(annotated by Frank J. Oteri, in progress)