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Lukas Foss

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Lukas Foss (born Lukas Fuchs, August 15, 1922 in Berlin, Germany; died February 1, 2009 in Manhattan) is an American composer, conductor, pianist, and professor. He studied with Julius Goldstein. He moved to Paris in 1933 where he studied piano with Lazare Lévy, composition with Noël Gallon, orchestration with Felix Wolfes, and flute with Louis Moyse. In 1937 he moved to America and studied at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, with Sergei Koussevitzky during the summers from 1939 to 1943 at the Berkshire Music Center, and, as a special student, composition with Paul Hindemith at Yale University from 1939 to 1940.

Foss was appointed professor of music at the University of California at Los Angeles in 1953, replacing Arnold Schoenberg. While there he founded the Improvisation Chamber Ensemble. He founded the Center for Creative and Performing Arts in 1963 while at the University at Buffalo. From 1981 to 1986, he was conductor of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. He has been Professor of Music, Theory, and Composition at Boston University since 1991. His notable students include Claire Polin and Rocco Di Pietro.

He is grouped in the “Boston school” along with Arthur Berger, Irving Fine, Alexei Haieff, Harold Shapero, and Claudio Spies.

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