A student of Alban Berg and Nadia Boulanger, Ross Lee Finney (1906-1997) was an American composer and professor of music at Smith College from 1929 to1949; then professor of composition and composer in residence at the University of Michigan from 1949 to 1973. He won the Pulitzer Prize in 1927 for his First String Quartet, and was awarded two Guggenheim Fellowships, one Rome Prize and elected to the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1962. Influential in modern composition and electronic music, his students include George Crumb as well as Roger Reynolds, who also may be found on Bronze by Gold.
The Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP) kicked off its season with a Jordan Hall program on November 13. Entitled “Virtuosity’s Velocity,” the concert was devoted to five American works for chamber orchestra. The music was demanding and difficult, but conductor Gil Rose did indeed elicit plenty of virtuosity from his ensemble.