Gunther Schuller Profile

As a French horn player, he worked under Arturo Toscanini and with Miles Davis - Gunther Schuller is as familiar with classical music as he is with jazz. Furthermore, he is at home in two cultures. A native of New York, Schuller spent a few years of his childhood at a school in Germany, and today, he often travels from Boston to Germany to conduct German orchestras. His work as an educator includes several years as president of the famous New England Conservatory in Boston. Most of all, however, Schuller has made his mark as a composer. During the 1950's, he began to write in a style that he described as "Third Stream," combining elements of contemporary classical music with modern jazz. In 1966, his jazz-influenced opera "The Visitation" was given its world premiere in Hamburg. Gunther Schuller continues to be active as a composer, conductor, music publisher and book author, and today (Nov. 22nd), he is celebrating his 75th birthday. Georg Hirsch spoke with the versatile musician and traced back his eventful life.

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