Robert Russell Bennett
Robert Russell Bennett (15 June 1894, Kansas City, Mo. – 18 August 1981, New York City, N.Y.) was an American composer.
Bennett's early music studies were with his parents and Carl Busch and from 1926-29 he studied composition with Nadia Boulanger. Most of his career was spent as an orchestrator for over 300 Broadway musicals from the 1920s into the 1960s. Examples of these include Show Boat, Girl Crazy, Of Thee I Sing, Annie Get Your Gun, South Pacific, The King and I, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music, and Camelot. He also worked on the documentary Victory at Sea by developing melodies by Richard Rodgers into over twelve hours of music.
His original works include seven symphonies for orchestra and an opera. Bennett also hosted his own radio show and wrote the book Instrumentally Speaking on scoring for theater groups. Besides his original compositions for winds he made arrangements for band of works such as Porgy and Bess, Oklahoma!, and The Sound of Music.
Works for Winds
- Autobiography (1979)
- Carousel Waltz (as arranger) (1945/1957)
- Christmas Overture (1981)
- Cinderella Waltz (as arranger)
- Concerto Grosso (1958/1959)
- Down to the Sea in Ships (ed. Glaser) (1954/2016)
- SS Eagle March (1969/2016)
- The Fabulous Country (1975)
- Fanfare for the AWSO
- Four Preludes (1974)
- Gigi (as arranger) (1957/)
- The Gondoliers (as arranger) (1889/1962)
- King and I, The, Selections (as arranger) (1951)
- The Many Moods of Christmas (arr. Rehbein) (2002)
- The Many Moods of Christmas, Suite II (arr. Rogers) (1971/2019)
- The Many Moods of Christmas, Suite IV (arr. Rogers) (1962/2019)
- March of the Siamese Children (as arranger)
- Oklahoma! (as arranger)
- On a Clear Day You Can See Forever (as arranger) (1970)
- Picasso Suite Sketch (as arranger) (1974)
- Porgy and Bess: Selections (as arranger) (1934/1942)
- Rose Variations (1956)
- Selections from "Suite of Old American Dances" (arr. Curnow) (1950/2005)
- Soap Box Derby March (1966)
- The Sound of Music -- Selections (as arranger) (1959/1960)
- South Pacific Symphonic Scenario (as arranger; adapt. Rogers) (1949/1999)
- Suite of Old American Dances (1949)
- Suite of Old American Dances (ed. Higgins) (1949/1952)
- Symphonic Songs for Band (ed. Ferencz) (1958)
- Three Humoresques
- Track Meet (1961)
- Twain and the River
- Victory at Sea
- White Christmas (as arranger) (1940/1948)
- Bennett, Robert Russell. The Broadway Sound: The Autobiography and Selected Essays of Robert Russell Bennett. Edited by George Ferencz. Eastman Studies in Music, no. 12. University of Rochester Press, 1999.
- Ferencz, George J. "Bennett, Robert Russell." In Grove Music Online. (accessed September 21, 2022).
- Ferencz, George J. Robert Russell Bennett: A Bio-Bibliography. Bio-Bibliographies in Music, No. 29. Greenwood Press, 1990.
- Hawkins, Roy Benton. The life and work of Robert Russell Bennett. 1989. Texas Tech University, Ph.D. dissertation.
- Miles, Richard B., and Larry Blocher. (2010). Teaching Music through Performance in Band. Volume 1. Chicago: GIA Publications. pp. 715.