Charles Ives Essay

1093 Words 5 Pages
Charles Ives

Charles Ives is known in our day as the “Father of American Music,” but in his day, he was known just like everyone else- an ordinary man living his life. He was born in Danbury, Connecticut on October 20, 1894 (Stanley 1) to his mother, Sarah Hotchkiss Wilcox Ives and father, George White Ives (A Life With Music, Swafford 4). His father was renowned for being the Union’s youngest bandmaster and having the best band in the Army (The Man His Life, Swafford 1). Little Charles was influenced early in his life by his father who had libertarian ideas about music (Stanley 1). Although Danbury prided itself as “the most musical town in Connecticut”, the people did not give the musical profession respect or understanding
…show more content…
It came to be the son’s destiny to make artistic use of the father's musical experiments. When Charles began composing at around the age of thirteen, he was writing the type of pieces that he heard around Danbury all of his life such as marches, church songs, and fiddle tunes (The Man His Life, Swafford 2). By the age of fourteen, Charlie had become the youngest salaried church organist in Connecticut. With this musically opportune job, Ives wrote a lot of choral and organ music George was hopeful that someday he might even make a living as a concert pianist, but Charles had other plans. Although he enjoyed his music, he resented its consumption of his life, so he started rebelling like all other teens do and started playing sports as an escape (The Man His Life, Swafford 1).
However, by his late teens he returned to his first love and was broadening his schedule to: composing for church, composing for his father’s bands, and writing studies in polychords and polytonality (Stanley 1). By the time Charles was leaving to prepare for college, he was a professional composer and had some works being published (The Man His Life, Swafford 2). He barely passed the Yale entrance exam but still ended up studying with one of the finest composer teachers in the United States (Stanley 1). His name was professor Horatio Parker, and he helped Ives all four years of Yale. Parker was an American who was trained in the German classical

More about Charles Ives Essay

Open Document