Music Makes a Memory


Robert Whitney at piano: © The Courier-Journal

The documentary “Music Makes a City” reveals the inspiring, nearly unbelievable story of an American city and its orchestra. In the late 1940s, the charismatic mayor of Louisville, Kentucky, embarked on an unusual scheme to save his hometown orchestra and bring prosperity to Louisville by commissioning new music on an unprecedented scale. The ambitious plan propelled the Louisville Orchestra to Carnegie Hall and international acclaim, and made a lasting contribution to musical history. The film features interviews with composers Lukas Foss, Gunther Schuller, Elliott Carter, Chou Wen-chung and Ned Rorem, among others who made significant contributions to American music in the 20th Century, and an evocative soundtrack of selected commissions recorded by the Louisville Orchestra.

We invite the community to celebrate the national PBS airings of this film by sharing your memories of these talented musicians and composers with us. Whether you had an opportunity to attend a premiere, studied a composer’s work in college, or specialize in a particular area of new music, we look forward to hearing and sharing your memories and enthusiasm for this great American tradition.

We welcome your input and ask you to please note that we do reserve the right to remove inappropriate comments.

nickcicero moderator

This is a great site! I loved watching the documentary.