Composer, primarily of symphonic and wind ensemble music;

Extremely prolific in the last half of the 20th century David Maslanka finally broke into the academic world of wind band composing in the late eighties and early nineties, garnering critical acclaim after having spent several years writing in a lonely obscurity and working as a music copyist in Missoula, Montana.

His first academically well received work was Rollo Takes A Walk, a suite for wind band with comic themes and undertones.

After several more successes, Ray Lichtenwalter, a long time friend of Maslanka's, was struck by tragedy: his wife began to die of cancer. Lichtenwalter lives in Arlington, Texas where he is a professor of music and musical director for the Texas Wind Symphony. Maslanka, not knowing how else to help his friend, went to him and stayed with him throughout the tough time.

From this experience Maslanka wrote Symphony #2: Golden Light, a truly amazing piece in its depth and expressiveness.

Maslanka continued a few years later with his Symphony #4 In One Movement, quite possibly one of the most incredible pieces for wind ensemble ever written. The piece weeps with innovations in harmony, orchestration, and individual instrumental tone manipulation.

In 1998, Maslanka became the first composer to have a piece premiered by streaming audio and video over the internet. Nine schools (including U of Arizona, U of North Texas, U of Indiana at Bloomington, among others) premiered simultaneously on April 10th at 8:00 pm CST. The piece, Sea Dreams, is a concerto for two horns; the composition was inspired by (but not about) visions the composer received during meditations.

In the composition field of music, most composers are real assholes. Everyone is so jealously guarded about their successes and failures that young composers can't get a word of advice from most of them. Mr. Maslanka is not like this, however; through an unbelievable series of events I was able to send him a copy of the score of my first symphony and a tape of the premiere. He wrote me a nice letter saying I was talented and then extremely constructively ripped my piece apart (and believe me, it needed it.) He even took the time to notate my score with the examples he was speaking of. He's truly a great composer, and hes actually available on Napster and Scour-type networks.

My personal recommendation is to get Symphony #4 in one movement.

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