Yale Library Book Talk: The War on Music by John Mauceri

Wednesday, March 8, 2023 - 4:00pm to 5:30pm
Sterling Memorial Library, Lecture Hall
120 High Street
New Haven, CT 06511

Renowned composer and musical scholar John Mauceri (BA ‘67) will speak about his new book The War on Music: Reclaiming the Twentieth Century.

Probing why so few works have been added to the canon since 1930, Mauceri examines the trajectories of great composers who, following World War I, created voices that were unique and versatile, but superficially simpler. He contends that the fate of composers during World War II is inextricably linked to the political goals of their respective governments, resulting in the silencing of experimental music in Germany, Italy, and Russia; the exodus of composers to America; and the sudden return of experimental music—what he calls “the institutional avant-garde”—as the lingua franca of classical music in the West during the Cold War.

John Mauceri taught at Yale from 1968-1984 and directed its Symphony Orchestra from 1968-1974. He has conducted most of the world’s greatest orchestras and opera companies.