The poetics of different musical
traditions interest LOTHAR KLEIN more than the novelties of
contemporary techniques, although his style is thoroughly
contemporary. All of Klein’s works, whether light or serious,
attempt to find parallel points of reference between old and new
music, and thereby comment on music’s historical continuity. He
maintains an aesthetic distinction between a sacred and a secular
manner in his music; his collage compositions, based on pre-existent
older music, bridge differences of time and culture and offer a rich
source for stylistic analysis. These works, in which labels like
“conservative” and “avant-garde” lose their meaning, present
an aural and intellectual fusion of styles, uniting past and present.
Dr. Lothar Klein was born in
Germany in 1932, raised in England, and educated in the United States.
He received a diversified education, including studies in philosophy
and literature, piano with Olga Samaroff-Stokowski, and culminating in
1961 with a Ph.D. degree in Musicology and Composition from the
University of Minnesota, where his compositional efforts were
encouraged by Dimitri Mitropoulos and Antal Dorati. As an
undergraduate, Klein wrote music for many theatre and film
productions, and in 1956 he won the Golden Reel Award of the American
Academy of Film Sciences for the best university-produced film score.
As a writer of words, Klein has
published extensively on topics ranging from interpretations of
historic music to that of rock music. He has written a yearly guest
column for the MENC Journal and contributed to The Composer, the
Canadian Forum, and the CBC.
He is currently Professor of
Composition at the University of Toronto, where he has also served as
Chairman of Graduate Studies in Music. He has fulfilled many
commissions from performing groups and theatre companies and his works
have won Rockefeller New Music prizes (1965 and 1967), the Greenwood
Choral Prize (1968), and a Floyd S. Chalmers Performing Arts Creation