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University of Iowa News Release


March 16, 2011

UI remembers Hervig, founding director of Center for New Music, March 27

The University of Iowa Center for New Music (CNM) will celebrate the life and work of Richard Hervig (1917-2010), the center's founding director, in a free concert of his compositions by faculty, students and alumni of the UI School of Music at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 27, in the Riverside Recital Hall.

The program will be:

--The Clarinet Sonata No. 1 (1953), one of Hervig's earliest chamber works, performed by faculty clarinetist Maurita Mead with pianist David Gompper, director of the CNM.
--"A Diversion" (2004), one of his last compositions, in which Gompper will accompany faculty cellist Anthony Arnone.
--Five Romantic Songs (1982), one of only two Hervig works for voice and piano, featuring graduate student mezzo soprano Lauren Tompkins and Gompper.
--The Sonata for Violin and Piano (1981), his final work designated as a sonata, performed by Gompper and faculty violinist Katie Wolfe.
--"In Summer Season" (1990) which was commissioned by the Preucil School of Music for string orchestra, conducted in this performance by alumnus Carey Bostian, principal cellist of the Cedar Rapids Symphony and conductor of the Iowa City Community String Orchestra.

The event will also feature comments by UI emeritus faculty member Laird Addis, who taught in the philosophy department but also performed for 29 seasons with the Quad City Symphony and 30 years with the Iowa City Community String Orchestra. He returned to composing in 2007, after a break of 45 years.

Hervig began his compositional career in 1941 and during more than 60 years of work produced dozens of compositions for a variety of instrumental ensembles. After teaching for a time in the public schools, he studied composition with Philip Greeley Clapp at the UI, earning a master's degree in 1942 and a doctorate in 1947.

He joined the UI faculty in 1955 and became the founding director of the CNM in 1966. Upon his retirement in 1988, he was appointed to a post at the Juilliard School, where he was co-chairman of Literature and Materials of Music program. He also taught at Luther College and Long Beach State College. He was an honorary member of the American Composers Alliance.

Hervig's compositions, most of which are instrumental and tonal, show a disciplined approach to standard forms and an exploration of timbral possibilities, as well as concern for establishing relationships between the parts while maintaining a separate musical personality for each instrument.

Some of his compositions were recorded by CRI, including a 1978 recording recently reissued on a CD, and by the CNM.

For detailed concert information visit

The School of Music and the CNM are units of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500

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