NTSU Notes, February 1980 Page: 5
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Stan Kenton leaves music to NTSU
The late Stan Kenton has willed his
entire collection of original scores and
manuscripts to North Texas State
University. A legend in his own life-
time, Kenton had been a supporter of
the jazz program at NT's School of
Music for over twenty years. A part of
Kenton's activities little known to the
general public was his deep
involvement in jazz music education
throughout the U.S.
Kenton was a long-time friend of
NT's Leon Breeden, director of jazz
studies, and visited the campus on
many occasions. Breeden was surprised
at the bequest of Kenton and said "I
was with him many times and he never
mentioned it. It's an act of great
kindness by a friend. He just wanted to
surprise us. That's typical of the man."
Kenton further provided in his will that
his orchestra be disbanded forever.
"He was totally against ghost bands,"
Breeden said, "it is the end of an era,
but his influence will go on for a long
time." Breeden estimated that at least
50 NT students have been performers
in Kenton's bands over the years. In
1965 Kenton was the honored guest
and featured speaker at the School of
Music's Honors Day Program,
sponsored by Pi Kappa Lambda
Urbane, articulate, and
uncompromising in his musical
integrity, Kenton earned the respect of
professionals from all walks of music
and became the idol of millions of jazz
fans around the world. In the middle
1960's Kenton realized one of his most
ambitious dreams in the Los Angeles
Neophonic Orchestra which performed
a confluence of modern jazz and
contemporary symphonic music.
Among leading composers who
contributed to this effort were Marty
Paich. Van Alexander, Hugo
Montenegro, John Williams, Bob
Florence and Allyn Ferguson. The
Saturday Review commented "Kenton
was the logical choice to be the
conductor of the Neophonic. Many of
the composers and performers
affiliated with Kenton's venture write
and perform film and TV scores of
such complexity as to obliterate the line
separating jazz from classical."
Kenton's high regard for the ability of
NT's Lab Band musicians was
demonstrated when he invited them to
Los Angeles to participate in
The acquisition of the Kenton scores
will complement 400 other works from
Kenton's library donated to the School
of Music in 1962. The Kenton
collection is one of the significant
resources of this century for jazz
studies and musicological research, and
is of inestimable value.
John Large, general secretary of the
International Association for
Experimental Research in Singing, has
issued a world-wide call for papers
dealing with voice science, vocal
pedagogy, laryngology and related
matters. Dr. Large, professor of voice
and vocal pedagogy, expects
representatives from more than 20
countries to participate in three
international conferences scheduled in
1981 in the United States, Austria and
Japan. Communications can be sent to
Professor John Large, NTSU School of
Music, Denton, Tx. 76203.
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North Texas State University. School of Music. NTSU Notes, February 1980, periodical, February 1980; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc181741/m1/5/: accessed February 21, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT College of Music.