Student, Paris Lycée Pasteur, 1937. Graduate, Curtis Institute Music, 1940. Independent study, Yale University, 1941.
Studied with Paul Hindemith. Studied with Julius Herford. Studied with Serge Koussevitzky.
Studied with Fritz Reiner. Studied with Isabelle Vengerova. Doctorate (honorary), Yale University, 1991.
Time Cycle, Echoi, Baroque Variations, Paradigm, Geod, three operas, Orpheus, Map, Percussion Concerto, String Quartets, American Cantata, Night Music for John Lennon, Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird, Solo Observed. Professor, of Conducting and Composition, University of Calif, at Los Angeles 1951-1962. Founder Director Center for Creative and Performing Arts, Buffalo University since 1963. Musical Director Conductor Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra 1962-1970.
Musical Director Conductor Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra 1971-1990, Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra 1972-1976, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra 1981-1987. Director, Conductor Ojai Festival, California 1955, 1956, 1957, Festival of the Arts Today, Buffalo Philharmonic 1960-1967, Franco-United States Festival (New York Philharmonic Orchestra) 1964, Stravinsky Festival (New York Philharmonic Orchestra) 1965. Visiting Professor Harvard University 1969-1970, Manhattan School of Music 1972-1973, Carnegie Mellon University 1987-1990.
Visiting Professor, of Composition, Tanglewood 1989, 1990.
Former conductor, music director, Buffalo Philharmonic. Music director, conductor, Brooklyn Philharmonic, 1971-1990, conductor laureate, 1990-2009. Music director, conductor Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, 1981-1986, conductor laureate, 1986-2009.
Orchestral compositions performed by many major orchestra. Best known works include (opera) Griffelkin, Baroque Variations (orchestra), Echoi (4 instruments), Time Cycle (songs with orchestra), Renaissance concerto (flute and orchestra). Orchestra, chamber music, ballets, works commissioned by, League of Composers, National Endowment for Arts, New York Arts Council, NBC opera on television, American Choral Conductors Association, Indiana University, 1979 Olympics, Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony.
(recipient New York Critic Circle citation for Prairie 1944, Society for Public American Music award for String Quartet in G 1948, Rome prize 1950, Horblit award for Piano concerto #2 1951, Naumburg Recording award for Song of Songs 1957, Creative Music grant Institute Arts and Letters 1957, New York Music Critics Circle award for Time-Cycle orchestra songs 1961, for Echoi 1963, Ditson award for conductor who has done the most for American music 1973, New York City award for special contribution to arts 1976, American Society of Composers award for adventurous programming 1979, Cryptography Research Inc recording award for Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird 1979).
National Institute of Arts and Letters, Academy, of Arts and Letters.
Married Cornelia Brendel, September 1951. Children: Christopher, Eliza.