Music of William Kraft
Liner Notes   Cat. No. NWCR639     Release Date: 2007-01-01
Speculum Musicae; John Graham, conductor; Ellen Geer, Michael Kermoyan, narrators; Los Angeles Percussion Ensemble; William Kraft, director; Ensemble for Contemporary Music, University of California at Santa Barbara; Paul Sperry, tenor; Pittsburgh New Music ensemble; William Kraft, conductor


William Kraft (b 1923, Chicago) has had a long and active career as composer, conductor, percussionist and teacher. From 1981-1985, Mr. Kraft was the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s composer-in-residence, for the first year under Philharmonic auspices, and the subsequent three years through the Meet the Composer Orchestra Residencies program. During his residency, he was the first director of the orchestra’s performing arm for contemporary music, the New Music Group. Mr. Kraft had previously been a member of the Los Angeles Philharmonic for twenty-six years; eight years as percussionist, and eighteen as principal timpanist. For three seasons, he was also assistant conductor for the orchestra.

Mr. Kraft was awarded two Anton Seidl Fellowships at Columbia University, graduating with a bachelor’s degree, cum laude, in 1951, and a master’s degree in 1954. His principal instructors were Jack Beeson, Seth Bingham, Henry Brant, Henry Cowell, Erich Hertzmann, Paul Henry Lang, Otto Luening, and Vladimir Ussachevsky. He received his training in percussion from Morris Goldenberg and in timpani from Saul Goodman, and studied conducting with Rudolf Thomas and Fritz Zweig.

During his early years in Los Angeles he organized and directed the Los Angeles Percussion Ensemble, a group that played a vital part in premieres and recordings of works by such renowned composers as Ginastera, Harrison, Krenek, Stravinsky, Varèse, and many others. As percussion soloist, he performed the American premieres of Stockhausen’s Zyklus and Boulez’s Le Marteau sans maître, in addition to recording L’Histoire du soldat under Stravinsky’s direction.


This title, originally issued on the CRI label, is now available for order from New World Records as an on-demand CD (CD-R). It can also be downloaded in MP3/320, FLAC and/or WAV format(s).

Various Artists

Music of William Kraft

MP3/320 $9.99
FLAC $9.99
WAV $9.99
CD $15.99

Track Listing

Gallery '83: Waterloo Bridge (Monet); Convergence (Pollock); Kandinsky Variations (Kraft)
William Kraft
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Des Imagistes: "singing gold"; "Sestina - Altaforte" ; "Strung on Some Unseen Web"; "11/2/72 E.P." ; "I have tried to write Paradise"
William Kraft
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Quartet for The Love of Time
William Kraft
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The Sublime and The Beautiful: "Notes from The Underground"
William Kraft
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The Sublime and The Beautiful: " Being Beauteous"
William Kraft
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