vaclav nelhybel

vaclav nelhybel

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Artist bio

Václav Nelhýbel (September 24, 1919 – March 22, 1996) was a Czech-American composer, mainly of works for student performers. He is considered one of the most prolific composers of the 20th century.

He was born the youngest of five children in Polanka, Czechoslovakia. He received his early musical training in Prague, going to both Charles University in Prague and Prague Conservatory. In 1942 he went to Switzerland, where he studied at University of Fribourg; after 1947 he taught there. In 1957 he came to the United States, where he taught at several schools, including the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He served as Composer-in-Residence at University of Scranton for several years, until his death.

Most of his music is for wind instruments or concert band, and most is designed for student performers. Read more
He used non-functional modal writing, pandiatonicism, and motor rhythms extensively.

Nelhybel received numerous prizes and awards for his compositions, which include, a prize at the International Music and Dance Festival in Copenhagen, Denmark, for his Ballet In the Shadow of the Limetree. In 1954, he was also awarded the first prize of the Ravitch Foundation in New York for his opera A Legend, and in 1978 he won an award from the Academy of Wind and Percussion Arts. Four American universities have honored him with honorary doctoral degrees in music.

In addition to his works for winds, he wrote three ballets, three operas, and a symphony. Read more on User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.