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Robert Ashley$
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Kyle Gann

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780252035494

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252035494.001.0001

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The Vessel of the Eternal Present

The Vessel of the Eternal Present

The Early Years

(p.7) 2 The Vessel of the Eternal Present
Robert Ashley

Kyle Gann

University of Illinois Press

This chapter situates Robert Ashley's formative years in his home state of Michigan. Born on March 28, 1930 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Ashley would grow up in the musically prestigious shadow of the University of Michigan, where many famous composers have taught, although he would never teach there himself. Ashley earned his bachelor's degree from that university, however, and later worked on a doctorate there, which he never completed. On and off, the town remained his center of activities for 39 years, and he even referred to it as “Headquarters.” To some extent, he thinks of his operas as drawn from the melody of the distinctive southeastern Michigan accent. Ashley would spend the early part of his creative life in Ann Arbor as co-founder and co-director of the ONCE festivals.

Keywords:   Ann Arbor, Michigan, University of Michigan, ONCE festivals, Ward J. Ashley, Nancy Reynolds

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