Stanley Glasser

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Stanley Glasser (1926-2018) was a South African composer.

Also known as Spike Glasser

Biography

Born in Johannesburg on 28 February, 1926, died 5 August 2018 in London. South African composer. After taking a degree in economics in South Africa he went to England in 1950 to study music, first with Frankel and then Seiber. In 1952 Glasser won a Royal Philharmonic Society prize, and from 1955 to 1958 read music at Cambridge. After three years as a lecturer at Cape Town University he returned to England in 1963; from 1969 to 1991 he was head of music at Goldsmiths College, University of London, and was appointed to the first chair in Music in 1989. In 1997 he was awarded an honorary DMus from Richmond College, the American International University of London. His lighter music includes jingles for South African radio, a full-length musical, Mr Paljas (1962), several numbers from the first African musical King Kong (1959), for which he was also musical director, and the first full-length South African ballet, The Square (1961). He was also the country's first composer of electronic music in his incidental music to Eugene O'Neill's The Emperor Jones. Several of his later works incorporate both the techniques of Western popular music and of African folk music, the latter reflecting Glasser's activity as an ethnomusicologist who has worked with the Pedi and Xhosa people of the northern Transvaal and Transkei. In The Chameleon and the Lizard (1970), based on a South African legend about the origin of death, the style is mostly direct and uncomplicated, and a strong element of music theatre is involved. Zonkizizwe (‘All the People’), an ebullient cantata sung in English, Zulu and Afrikaans, is reminiscent of Walton and Bernstein in its rhythmic verve and melodic appeal. Glasser is the author of The A–Z of Classical Music (London, 1994). GLASSER, Stanley (Spike). He did his post-graduate music studies at Cambridge. He was the musical director for King Kong, which was directed by Leon Gluckman, and staged by the Union Artists at the Wits University Great Hall in 1959. Arthur Goldreich did the design and Arnold Dover did the choreography for this musical starring the trumpeter Hugh Masekela, Nathan Mdledle in the lead role, band vocalist Miriam Makeba, Joe Mogotsi and Peggy Phango.


Tucker, 1997;

http://phonoarchive.org/grove/Entries/S11263.htm

Stephanus Muller. 2018. "Stanley Glasser: a life of exile and bravely crossing musical boundaries", The Conversation, August 9, 2018[1]



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