Rediscovering James Robert Gillette's "Vistas"

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James Robert Gillette (1886-1963) was an early advocate for original wind band music at a time when marches and band transcriptions of orchestral music contributed heavily to the wind band repertoire. Primarily known as an influential, in-demand organist and composer, Gillette became the director of the Carleton College band program in Northfield, Minnesota in 1924. Taking an innovative approach to building, organizing, and programming, Gillette transformed that group into the Carleton Symphony Band and led a wider push for the symphonic band movement. In promoting his ideals of the symphonic band, he composed and arranged music specifically for the Carleton ... continued below

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Kitelinger, Jennifer Joy December 2017.

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  • Kitelinger, Jennifer Joy

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James Robert Gillette (1886-1963) was an early advocate for original wind band music at a time when marches and band transcriptions of orchestral music contributed heavily to the wind band repertoire. Primarily known as an influential, in-demand organist and composer, Gillette became the director of the Carleton College band program in Northfield, Minnesota in 1924. Taking an innovative approach to building, organizing, and programming, Gillette transformed that group into the Carleton Symphony Band and led a wider push for the symphonic band movement. In promoting his ideals of the symphonic band, he composed and arranged music specifically for the Carleton Symphony Band. One of his original works, Vistas, was widely performed and well-received in the decade just prior to and after its publication in 1934. Despite the popularity of the piece at that time, it has since gone out of print and is a rarely performed piece from Gillette's repertoire. This dissertation focuses on Vistas, Gillette's second published tone poem. This study starts with the examination of the history of Vistas from its origins as a movement in Gillette's transcription of Paul Robert Fauchet's Symphony in B-flat to its subsequent transformation and publication as an original work for band. Next, the performance history and reception of Vistas in the United States is traced and described from the year of publication to the present day. Finally, discrepancies present in the 1934 publication of Vistas are addressed through the creation of a performance edition. This performance edition also provides modifications to make the piece more widely accessible to wind bands today and the full score is presented at the end of the study.

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  • December 2017

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  • Jan. 27, 2018, 7:36 a.m.

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Kitelinger, Jennifer Joy. Rediscovering James Robert Gillette's "Vistas", dissertation, December 2017; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1062913/: accessed October 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .