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Quiet City, (for English horn, trumpet, and an strings) was originally written in 1939 as incidental music to accompany Irwin Shaw's play of the same name, commissioned for the Group Theatre and directed by Elia Kazan. Copland described the piece as "an attempt to mirror the troubled main character of Irwin Shaw's play," Rewritten as a suite in 1940, the piece, conducted by Daniel Saidenberg, premiered in January 1941 in New York.

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