Schuman Biographer Recognized

Scholar Steve Swayne has been honored by ASCAP with the Nicolas Slonimsky Award for Outstanding Musical Biography in the concert music field for his book, Orpheus in Manhattan: William Schuman and the Shaping of America's Musical Life, published by Oxford University Press. This award was established to honor the memory of Slonimsky (1894 - 1995), the Russian-American composer, conductor, musicologist and critic. It is part of ASCAP's 2012 Deems Taylor awards Program.

Click on this link to access a transcription of William Schuman's 1986 phone interview with Chicago's Bruce Duffie on WNIB radio:

New Publication

Orpheus in Manhattan: William Schuman and the Shaping of America's Musical Life by Steve Swayne

Oxford University Press, January 2011

The musical landscape of New York City and the United States of America would look quite different had it not been for William Schuman. Orpheus in Manhattan, a fully objective and comprehensive biography of William Schuman, portrays a man who had a profound influence upon the artistic and political institutions of his day and beyond. Steve Swayne draws heavily upon Schuman's letters, writings, and manuscripts as well as unprecedented access to archival recordings and previously unknown correspondence.

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Theodore Presser, William Schuman's primary publisher, has created a portrait of the composer. Click here to see what it's all about.


Schuman: Night Journey

July 18, 2015, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Malden, MA

Schuman: The Witch of Endor

July 16, 2015, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Malden, MA

Schuman: New England Triptych

July 4, 2016, (Chester), Newport Symphony Orchestra, OR
Oct. 27, 2016, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
Nov. 6, 2016, South Orange Symphony Orchestra, NJ
Feb. 10, 2017, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
Feb. 26, 2017, Albion College Symphony Orchestra, MI
Apr. 21, 2017, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX
Apr. 29, 2017, Claflin Hill Symphony Orchestra, Milford, MA
July 2, 3, 4, 2017, (Chester), Los Angeles Philharmonic, CA

Ives/Schuman: Variations on "America"

July 1, 2, 3, 2016, San Diego Symphony Orch. Assn., CA
July 3, 2016, Nashville Symphony, TN
July 4, 5, 2016, Colorado Springs Philharmonic, CO
July 24, 2016, Eastern Music Festival, Greensboro, NC
Aug. 4, 2016, Chicago Sinfonietta, IL
Aug. 11, 2016, Cleveland Orchestra, OH
Sept. 10, 2016, Muncie Symphony Orchestra, IN
Oct. 3, 2016, Glens Falls Symphony Orchestra, NY
Oct. 8, 2016, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL
Oct. 15, 2016, Washington Symphony Orchestra, Wash., PA
Oct. 27, 2016, Norfolk County Youth Orchestra, Norwich, U.K.
Nov. 2, 2016, Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra Assoc., OH
Nov. 3, 2016, Naples Philharmonic, FL
Nov. 17, 18, 2016, Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, TN
Jan 14, 2017, Fresno Madera City Music Educ., CA
Jan. 14, 2017, Indiana All-State Orchestra, Osceola, IN
Feb. 25, 2017, Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra, IN
Mar. 16, 2017, Orquestra Filharmônica de Goiás, Brazil
Mar. 26, 2017, Tennessee Technical Univ., Cookeville, TN
Mar. 27, 28, 29, 31, 2017, New Haven Sym. Orch., CT
Apr. 22, 2017, Big Bend Comm. Orch., Tallahassee, FL
Apr. 26, 2017, Main Line Symphony Orchestra, Valley Forge, PA
Apr. 29, 2017, Tulare County Symphony, Visalia, CA
May 7, 2017, Elgin Community College, IL
June 4, 11, 2017, Wash. Metropolitan Phil., Alexandria, VA
June 7, 2017, Kansas City Symphony Orchestra, MO
July 3, 2017, Apostolic Faith Church, Portland, OR
July 4, 2017, Wenatchee Valley Symphony, WA
July 15, 2017, Symfonieorkest Nijmegen, The Netherlands
July 20, 2017, Bohemian Club, San Francisco, CA
July 21, 2017, New York Philharmonic, NY
Aug. 11, 2017, Philadelphia Orchestra, PA
Oct. 11, 12, 13, 14, 2017, Sarasota Orchestra, FL
Nov. 6, 7, 2017, Erie Philharmonic, PA


American Muse: The Life and Times of William Schuman by Juilliard President, Joseph W. Polisi, Amadeus Press, 2008, is a compelling new biography of William Schuman, the composer, teacher and arts administrator who was a long-time president of the Juilliard School and the first significant president of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Polisi has written the definitive story of Schuman's fascinating life – an in-depth chronicle of the many hats Schuman wore, his bold and lasting legacy, and his controversial innovations – including the story of the turbulent struggle among political, financial and artistic forces in New York City during the mid-twentieth century – a struggle which greatly impacted the funding and building of Lincoln Center where the Juilliard School eventually became the educational wing at Schuman's urging. With Schuman's own oral histories and interviews with family members among resources, Polisi's book (which includes an extensive appendix of descriptive analyses with musical examples of ten of Schuman's works) is essential reading for anyone interested in the singular life of William Schuman and the era he so greatly influenced. For more information please go to