Betsy Jolas

(b. 1926)
Betsy Jolas was born in Paris in 1926. With her parents, singer and translator Maria Jolas and journalist and poet Eugene Joas, her family settled in the United States from France in 1940. Jolas specialised in music at Bennington College, Vermont after completing her general studies in New York where she developed her contemporary and atonal voice. Betsy Jolas returned to Paris in 1946 and carried on her education at Conservatoire National Supérieur de musique with Olivier Messiaen and Darius Milhaud. Having spent time as Messiaen’s assistant in the early 1970’s, Jolas was appointed to the faulty of music in 1975 and since then has returned to the US again teaching at San Diego, Los Angeles and Berkeley, Tanglewood in Boston in addition to the University of Michigan. Her works have been championed by artists such as William Christie, Sir Simon Rattle and Kent Nagano amongst others associating with ensembles such as the London Symphony Orchestra, Boston Symphony, BBC Symphony and Berlin Philharmonic.

Betsy Jolas Composition Timpani and Percussion Requirements

B Day for Symphony Orchestra

Timpani + 2 percussion
1) vibraphone, sizzle cymbal, 3 suspended cymbals, medium tam tam, bongos, 3 tom toms, tarole, snare drum, 3 wood blocks, 2 temple blocks, small metal block
2) F# 4 tubular bell, sizzle cymbal, 3 suspended cymbals, medium tam tam, low tam tam, small triangle, bongos, 3 tom toms, 4 temple blocks, wood block

Histoires Vraies

Timpani x 2 pairs + 3 percussion
1) vibraphone, 4 crotales (E7, G7, A7, Bb7), 3 suspended cymbals, 2 sizzle cymbals, 3 tam tams, wooden board, bongs, 3 tom toms, 3 wood blocks, 2 Chinese drums, claves, maracas
2) tubular bells D4, F, F#, G, G#, A C5), 3 suspended cymbals, 2 suzzle cymbals, 3 tam tams, snare drum, tarole, 2 wood blocks, bongos, 3 tom toms, 4 temple blocks, wooden board
3) mokubio (high Japanese wood block), slapstick, 3 suspended cymbals, 2 sizzle cymbals, 3 tam tams, claves, conga, bongos, 3 tom toms, maracas, 2 wood blocks, temple block, metal block

A Little Summer Suite

Timpani + 4 percussion
1) marimba, rainstick, 3 temple blocks, maracas, glass chimes, triangle, 2 suspended cymbals high and medium, 2 sizzle cymbals high and medium, C# gong, very large tam tam, bongs, 3 tom toms (high, medium, low)
2) vibraphone, wood chines, 2 medium wood blocks, 2 metal blocks (high and low), bongs, 3 tom toms (high, medium, low), G crotale, 2 suspended cymbals (high and medium), 2 sizzle cymbals (high and medium), large tam tam
3) medium claves, 2 temple blocks (medium and low), tarole, military drum, bongos, 3 tom toms (high, medium and low), 2 metal blocks, 3 suspended cymbals (high, medium, low), 3 sizzle cymbals, (high, medium, low), 2 tam tams (medium and low)
4) 2 wooden boards, snare drum, bongos, 3 tom toms (high, medium, low), medium triangle, 3 suspended cymbals (small, medium, large), 3 sizzle cymbals (high, medium, low), 2 tam tams (medium and low)

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