The works of award-winning composer Marek Harris have been performed
throughout the United States and Europe by some of the world’s
most prominent musicians and ensembles. The extraordinary Wynton
Marsalis commissioned and performed Harris' Eight Curves for
Solo Trumpet. Harris’ oeuvre is extensive and includes
five symphonies, an oratorio based on texts of Bertrand Russell,
seven concertos, and numerous solo, orchestral, vocal, and chamber
music compositions. These works have been premiered by musicians
of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the Austin Symphony
Orchestra, the San Francisco Symphony, the Utah Symphony, the
Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra,
the New Orleans Symphony Orchestra, La Orchestra de Oviedo de
EspaÒa, the Eastman Trombone Choir, and the Lyric Theatre
in New York City among others. Harris’ music has been acclaimed
by critics as “original and uncompromising”, “beautiful
and communicative”, and “colorful and lyrical”.
Harris holds advanced degrees from the prestigious Eastman and
Juilliard Schools of Music where he studied with David Diamond,
Samuel Adler, and Pulitzer Prize recipient Joseph Schwantner.
An accomplished pianist, Mr. Harris has also attained proficiency
in many of the orchestral instruments in his pursuit of excellence
as a composer. He is a musician of diverse musical interests,
which are reflected in his extensive experience as an arranger,
accompanist, and studio musician. Recent compositions include
New Angels for solo violin and orchestra, which was commissioned
and given its world premiere by the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra.
It's Texas premiere was given by the Austin Symphony Orchestra
to another enthusiastic capacity audience. Other recent works
include the piano quintet Voodoo Trances-Spectral Dances, and
the Duo-Sonata for two violins, both commissioned by the Finger
Lakes Chamber Ensemble, Don’t Push The River for two pianos
and orchestra, and his first piece for Violin Octet, Ballet of
the Apparitions, to be given its world premiere by the Albert
Consort on November 2, 2005.
Frank Lewin (b. 1925 in Breslau, Germany), immigrated to the United States in 1940. He studied composition with Felix Deyo, Jack Frederick Kilpatrick, Hans David, and Roy Harris before attending Yale University School of Music (B.Mus. '51), where his teachers were Richard Donovan and Paul Hindemith. His concert compositions include song cycles on poems by Thomas Nashe, William Blake, Edwin Arlington Robinson, and Ogden Nash, as well as choral music and instrumental concertos. In 1965 he conducted his cantata Music for the White House in the East Room during a state occasion. In 1969 his Mass for he Dead was given its first performance during a memorial service for Robert F. Kennedy in the Chapel of Princeton University.
Lewin has composed songs and incidental music for a variety of plays ranging from Shakespeare to Tennessee Williams, and has written scores for seven historical outdoor dramas, for which he also specified the quadraphonic playback systems. (Three of these scores have been released on CD by Demeter Music, Inc., in the series Music for America's Past.) In addition, Lewin has written original scores for almost 200 films, including 130 hour-long episodes in the television series "The Defenders" and "The Nurses."
Lewin's opera Burning Bright (Notevole Music Publishing) is based on the novel and play by John Steinbeck. Composition of the opera was supported by two grants from the National endowment for the Arts Composer/Librettist Program, as well as two fellowships from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts which included a Distinguished Artist Award. The opera was first performed at Yale in 1993; this production received a major grant in the New American Works category of the NEA's Opera-Musical Theater Program. The premiere of Burning Bright by a professional opera company was given in July 2000 by the Opera Festival of New Jersey. A recording of the opera-under the auspices of the Composers Guild of New Jersey, and supported in pert by a grant from the Copland Fund-will be released commercially in 2001.
Professor Lewin was on the faculty of the Yale School of Music from 1971 to 1992, teaching composition for film. During this period he also taught the course Music in Modern Media at the Columbia University School of the Arts. He has also been active as an editor and engineer of recorded music, and is the author of several technical articles on motion picture music and recorded sound.
If you are a composer currently composing for any
of the Hutchins Violin Octet instruments, the New Violin Family
Association would be delighted to add you to this "composers
page". For further information please contact us at the following
The New Violin Family, Inc., 25 Taylor Drive, Wolfeboro,
NH 03894 or by email