Excerpt from Deseret News Article:
Scott Holden, a concert pianist and professor of keyboard performance at Brigham Young University, went through all of the music to select pieces for the June 29 concert at Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall titled “100 Years of Mormon Music.”
“I had a stack over 2 feet tall on my desk,” Holden said. “I wanted to find things that showed the breadth of the compositional styles of the last 100 years and the diversity of composers, representing the broad demographics of the church.”
BYU professor of music Scott Holden compiled and recorded the album "The Unknown Galaxy: A Century of Classical Mormon Music," which he will perform on June 29 at Zankel Hall in New York City as part of the Mormon Arts Center Festival.
Most of the pieces Holden selected have never been heard before, including two world premieres from award-winning composers Lansing McLoskey and Lisa DeSpain.
Holden will also be playing from the manuscripts of recently discovered pieces from two composers with deep Utah connections: James W. McConkie (Bruce R. McConkie’s brother who died from polio at age 32) and Leroy Robertson, former professor and chairman of the music department at both Brigham Young University and University of Utah.
According to Holden, Robertson wrote the tempestuous “Etude” featured in the upcoming performance while he was studying music in Germany in the early 1930s. He heard that a man named Hitler was speaking to the public and forged press credentials to listen. Robertson sat in the box behind Hitler and was sickened by his speech. When he left, he paused to put his leg up on a window ledge and write out this piece.
Holden has been practicing this and the other pieces in the festival for seven or eight hours a day since he put the program together in last November. In order to make the music more widely available, he also recorded a CD of the selections.