Maslanka Weekly: Best of the Web – No. 29, Remembering David

Maslanka Weekly highlights excellent performances of David Maslanka’s music from around the web.

We start the beginning of 2019 by taking time to remember the life and music of David Maslanka. The world lost David (and his wife Alison) in summer of 2017. The year and a half that would follow brought many concerts, lectures, and special remembrances of David and his life – especially by those who knew him best. Perhaps the greatest fruit that resulted was the completion of Symphony No. 10 by David’s son Matthew. Premiered on April 3, 2018 by Scott Hagen and the University of Utah Wind Ensemble, this symphony has quickly become one of the most exciting new works in the wind band repertoire.

David Maslanka Retrospective

At the 72nd Annual Midwest Clinic held in Chicago in December of 2018, a panel of distinguished professionals including Emily Threinen, Matthew Maslanka, Mallory Thompson, Stephen P. Bolstad, and Gary Green came together to discuss the life and significance of David and his music. If you missed this amazing discussion, you can watch it below.

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David’s Compositional Practice

In order to foster a greater understanding of David’s life and music, Matthew, Stephen, and Kathryn Maslanka have set up The David Maslanka Foundation. Please visit the Foundation’s homepage and consider giving a tax-deductible charitable donation. One of the missions of The David Maslanka Foundation is to establish “The Maslanka Archive,” which will consist of his musical scores, sketches, recordings, notes, journals, instruments, artwork, and personal effects, among other items.

In order to have a fundamental understanding of David’s compositional practice, it is imperative to become familiar with the 371 Bach Chorales. David began each of his composing sessions playing through a choral and singing each line from this sacred collection. Watch below as Matthew Maslanka demonstrates how David used a Bach Chorale in the climax of Symphony No. 4 and in the final measures of Symphony No. 10.

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David Maslanka – The Power of Kindness

For all of those who knew him, perhaps the greatest hallmark of David Maslanka was his innate kindness and ability to express love to everyone with whom he came into contact. He especially took an interest in nurturing the next generation of composers who came to him for help and advice. Watch below as Kevin Krumenauer reminisces on his experiences with David as a student.

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We would love to hear from you! If you had any special experiences with David that you would like to share with us, or if you know of any outstanding performances of David Maslanka’s music on the web, please email us at