Cameron Baird: Bringing Paul Hindemith and Aaron Copland to Buffalo
Did they or didn’t they? Come view the new Music Library exhibit, Cameron Baird: Bringing Paul Hindemith and Aaron Copland to Buffalo, and see how you would answer the questions: Did Paul Hindemith really teach at the University of Buffalo in 1940? Should Aaron Copland have been allowed to serve as the first Slee Lecturer in Music in 1957? The exhibit addresses both questions, and includes letters, photographs, and newspaper articles that touch on greater issues of how politics before and after World War II shaped the careers of artists such as Hindemith and Copland. Excerpts from Copland’s testimony before the Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations chaired by Joseph McCarthy are provided in the physical exhibit and a link to the full testimony is included in the online summary. Cameron Baird is at the core of both stories. He shaped the musical culture of Buffalo in many ways and the stories presented in the exhibit demonstrate to some degree the range of his influence in the musical world at the time. The stories also provide a measure of his humanitarianism and courage in the face of political factors beyond the world of music.