Diamond, David. (1915–2005)
Early Autograph Letter Signed
Early autograph letter signed from the American composer to a close friend, dating from Diamond's first summer in Paris in 1936, sharing news and gossip and asking his friend for help collecting his mail and setting up his apartment. August 31, 1936. Diamond writes: "Dearest [...], Tomorrow at 10 in the morning I see Despian for the last time, and I shall bring back [...] information for you. Celia may come along, but since his letter asked me to come to his atelier, I had better go alone, I think. Also, these last 4 days are spent in preparation for leaving & I am going frantic trying to figure out how to send my bust and my records, for I've only 200 francs left, in other words, when I see you at the pier, I shall have 50¢ for the taxi man & tips. But I think Ross is going to support me during September. So I hope. If not I'll have to call Whiteman to get the checks going in circulation. Had dinner with Cora & Mrs. Albsberg last night & we dished dirt up to the Eiffelt Tower—& Henry was torn limb from limb—the result is that Mikey is now the high hope of the Schubart ménage. [...] Well my darling, in 12 days I shall be seeing you again.—I may go to Rochester for a week. Will you come too? And will you help me fix up my bed as yours is? I want my apartment to be [...] this year for I've so much to put in it—your head of me amongst my other things, photos, dessins [...] Love until the 12th, David." Heavy folding creases with partial splits; toning; overall very good. 7 x 11 inches (18 x 28 cm).
David Diamond is considered one of the preeminent American composers of his generation. He enjoyed wide success in the 1940's and 1950's, before the serial and modernist trends largely pushed him into the shadows. The New York Times described him as "part of what some considered a forgotten generation of great American symphonists, including Howard Hanson, Roy Harris, William Schuman, Walter Piston and Peter Mennin."
"In the fall of 1934 Diamond went to New York on a scholarship from the New Music School and Dalcroze Institute, studying with Paul Boepple and Roger Sessions until the spring of 1936. That summer, Diamond was commissioned to compose the music for a ballet entitled TOM, to a scenario by E.E. Cummings based on "Uncle Tom's Cabin", to be choreographed by Leonide Massine. Massine was near Paris, and Diamond was sent there to be near the choreographer. Although, due to financial problems, the work was never performed, Diamond did establish contacts with Darius Milhaud, Albert Roussel, and the composer he revered above all others, Maurice Ravel." (www.daviddiamond.org.)