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Abramson, Robert M.

In Memoriam

Robert M. Abramson had a long and varied career as a coach, pianist, conductor, composer, author, teacher, writer, and most recently, video creator. He taught at every age level in every type of school in Europe, Asia, and the U.S. He was a teacher of teachers and performers at the Juilliard School in the Dance, Drama, Opera, and Instrumental Music departments. Mr. Abramson also taught Theory, Solfège, Rhythmics, and Piano Improvisation and Sight Reading at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City. He is internationally acclaimed as a leading developer of the methods of Emile Jaques-Dalcroze.

Mr. Abramson was the founder and director of the Manhattan Dalcroze Institute, which is now located at the famous Juilliard School at Lincoln Center. His major contributions were in the fields of music, movement, and musicality, and he is known for his gifts of musical improvisation. After many successful years at the Dalcroze School of Music, he left and began directing his own school, the Robert Abramson Dalcroze Institute in New York City. It is there that he and his colleague, Daniel Cataneo, taught all of the original Dalcroze Solfège, Rhythmique, and the original Dalcroze exercises from his first collection of Rhythmique, Gymnastique, and Plastique Animé.

Mr. Abramson is the author of "Music for Perception and Cognition," published by C.P.P. Belwin, "Teaching Music in the 21st Century" with Choksy, Gillespie, and Woods, published by Prentice-Hall, "Rhythm Games I and II" with text and original music composed and performed by the author, published by Warner Brothers, and "Teaching Music as a Second Language," a theory, ear-training, and sight-singing method, published by Music and Movement Press. His latest work, "Dalcroze HanDances," is a beginners method for piano. His most recent work was on the video tape, "Eurthymics," done with Bob Abramson and published by GIA Publications, Inc.

As a composer, he wrote six documentary film scores, a concerto titled, "Dance Variations for Piano and Orchestra," recorded by Angel Records, and a ballet titled, "Touch and Go." He wrote three song cycles on texts by Whitman and James Joyce, and one set of orchestral songs on text by James Joyce. "The Three Old Songs Resung" was written because of his interest in extending and renewing the world of American and English folk music as narratives for our own times. Mr. Abramson recorded with the famous folk singers Oscar Brand and Jean Ritchie on many recordings for Electra and Traditional Records.