Gunther Alexander Schuller (November 22, 1925 – June 21, 2015) was an American composer, conductor,  horn player, author, historian educator, publisher, and jazz musician.
Biography and works
Schuller was born in
Queens, New York City, the son of German parents Elsie (Bernartz) and Arthur E. Schuller, a violinist with the  New York Philharmonic.
He studied at the  Saint Thomas Choir School and became an accomplished French horn player and flute player.
At age 15, he was already playing horn professionally with the American Ballet Theatre (1943) followed by an appointment as principal hornist with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (1943-45), and then the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in New York, where he stayed until 1959.
During his youth, he attended the Precollege Division at the  Manhattan School of Music, later going on to teach at the school. But, already a high school dropout because he wanted to play professionally, Schuller never obtained a degree from any institution.  He began his career in jazz by recording as a horn player with  Miles Davis (1949-50).
Performance and growth
In 1955, Schuller and jazz pianist
John Lewis founded the Modern Jazz Society, which gave its first concert at  Town Hall, New York, the same year and later became known as the Jazz and Classical Music Society. While lecturing at Brandeis University in 1957, he coined the term " Third Stream" to describe music that combines classical and jazz techniques. He became an enthusiastic advocate of this style and wrote many works according to its principles, among them  Transformation (1957, for jazz ensemble),  Concertino (1959, for jazz quartet and orchestra),  Abstraction (1959, for nine instruments), and  Variants on a Theme of Thelonious Monk (1960, for 13 instruments) utilizing Eric Dolphy and Ornette Coleman. In 1966, he composed the opera  The Visitation.
He also orchestrated  Scott Joplin's only known surviving opera for the Treemonisha Houston Grand Opera's premiere production of this work in 1975.
In 1959, Schuller largely gave up performance to devote himself to composition, teaching and writing. He conducted internationally and studied and recorded jazz with such greats as
Dizzy Gillespie and John Lewis among many others. Schuller wrote over 190 original compositions in many musical genres. 
In the 1960s and 1970s, Schuller was president of
New England Conservatory, where he founded The New England Ragtime Ensemble. During this period, he also held a variety of positions at the Boston Symphony Orchestra's summer home in Tanglewood, serving as director of new music activities from 1965 to 1969 and as artistic director of the Tanglewood Music Center from 1970 to 1984 and creating the Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music.
In the 1970s and 1980s Schuller founded the publishers Margun Music and Gun-Mar and the record label GM Recordings.
 Margun Music and Gun-Mar were sold to  Music Sales Group in 1999.
Schuller recorded the LP
Country Fiddle Band with the Conservatory's country fiddle band, released by Columbia Records in 1976. Reviewing in (1981), Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies Robert Christgau wrote: "The melodies are fetchingly tried-and-true, the (unintentional?) stateliness of the rhythms appropriately nineteenth-century, and the instrumental overkill (twenty-four instruments massed on 'Flop-Eared Mule') both gorgeous and hilarious. A grand novelty."
Schuller was editor-in-chief of Jazz Masterworks Editions, and co-director of the
Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra in Washington, D.C. Another effort of preservation was his editing and posthumous premiering at  Lincoln Center in 1989 of Charles Mingus's immense final work, , subsequently released on Columbia/Sony Records. Epitaph He was the author of two major books on the history of jazz,  (1968) Early Jazz and  The Swing Era (1991).
His students included
Irwin Swack,  Ralph Patt,  John Ferritto, Eric Alexander Hewitt, Mohammed Fairouz, Oliver Knussen, Nancy Zeltsman, Riccardo Dalli Cardillo and hundreds of others. See:  List of music students by teacher: R to S#Gunther Schuller.
Accomplishments in final decades
From 1993 until his death, Schuller served as Artistic Director for the Northwest Bach Festival in
Spokane, Washington state. Each year the festival showcased works by J.S. Bach and other composers in venues around Spokane. At the 2010 festival, Schuller conducted the Mass in B minor at St. John's Cathedral, sung by the Bach Festival Chorus, composed of professional singers in Eastern Washington, and the BachFestival, composed of members of the Spokane Symphony and others. Other notable performances Schuller conducted at the festival include the St Matthew Passion in 2008 and Handel's in 2005.
Schuller's association with Spokane began with guest conducting the Spokane Symphony for one week in 1982.
He then served as Music Director from 1984 to 1985  and later regularly appeared as a guest conductor. Schuller also served as Artistic Director to the nearby Festival at Sandpoint. 
His modernist orchestral work
Where the Word Ends, organized in four movements corresponding to those of a symphony, premiered at the Boston Symphony Orchestra in 2009.
In 2011 Schuller published the first volume of a two-volume autobiography,
Gunther Schuller: A Life in Pursuit of Music and Beauty.
In 2012, Schuller premiered a new arrangement, the
Treemonisha suite from Joplin's opera. It was performed as part of The Rest is Noise season at London's South Bank in 2013.
Schuller died on June 21, 2015 in
Boston, from complications from leukemia. He married Marjorie Black, a singer and pianist, in 1948. Their marriage produced two sons, George and Edwin, and lasted until her death in 1992.  His sons survive him, as does his brother Edgar.
Awards and honors
Ditson Conductor's Award, 1970. 
Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music Performance, Joplin: , 1974 The Red Back Book
Grammy Award for Best Album Notes, Footlifters, 1976 First place, Kennedy Center Friedheim Awards, 1987
William Schuman Award for lifetime achievement, Columbia University, 1988
MacArthur Foundation Genius grant, 1991,  Lifetime achievement award,
DownBeat magazine, 1993 Lifetime achievement award,
BMI Foundation, 1994 
Pulitzer Prize for " Of Reminiscences and Reflections", 1994 Festival of his music performed by
Boston Symphony and New England Conservatory, 2005  Edward MacDowell Medal, MacDowell Colony, 2015 
Modern Jazz Quartet, Exposure (Atlantic, 1960)  
Dizzy Gillespie, (Verve, 1961) Perceptions John Lewis,
(Atlantic, 1961) Jazz Abstractions
Charles Mingus, (Limelight, 1960) Mingus Revisited Charles Mingus,
(Columbia, 1990) Epitaph
New England Ragtime Ensemble, Scott Joplin: (Capitol, 1973) The Red Back Book Gerard Schwarz, Turn of the Century Cornet Favorites (CBS/Columbia, 1977)  
As a sideman
Miles Davis, (Capitol, 1949/50, released 1957) Birth of the Cool
Dizzy Gillespie, (Verve, 1960) Gillespiana Dizzy Gillespie,
(Verve, 1961) Carnegie Hall Concert
Johnny Mathis, " Prelude to a Kiss" (Columbia, 1956)  Johnny Mathis,
(Columbia, 1956) Fly Me to the Moon (In Other Words)
Gerry Mulligan, (DRG, 1980) Holliday with Mulligan Julius Watkins, (Philips, 1962) French Horns for My Lady
Musings: The Musical Worlds of Gunther Schuller. Oxford University Press. 1986. 
Oxford University Press. 1968. New printing 1986. Early Jazz: Its Roots and Musical Development. 
The Swing Era: The Development of Jazz, 1930-1945. Oxford University Press. 1991. 
Gunther Schuller: A Bio-Bibliography Greenwood Publishing Group, 1987. 
The Compleat Conductor. Oxford University Press, 1998. 
Horn Technique. Oxford University Press, 1962. New Printing 1992.  Gunther Schuller: A Life in Pursuit of Music and Beauty. University of Rochester Press, 2011. 
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. The History of Jazz. Oxford University Press. June 19, 1986. Early Jazz ISBN 978-0-19-504043-2 . Retrieved 2015.
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Peterson, Jonathon (2002). "Tuning in thirds: A new approach to playing leads to a new kind of guitar". American Lutherie: The Quarterly Journal of the Guild of American Luthiers. Tacoma, WA: The Guild of American Luthiers. 72 (Winter): 36-43. ISSN 1041-7176. Archived from the original on October 21, 2011 . Retrieved 2012.
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Michael Delucchi. "Gunther Schuller makes the music beautiful". Sandpointonline.com . Retrieved 2010.
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"Former NEC President Gunther Schuller To Receive 2015 Edward MacDowell Medal". New England Conservatory. April 7, 2015 . Retrieved 2015.
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Mathieson, Kenny (2002). Cookin' Hard Bop and Soul Jazz, 1954-65. Edinburgh: Canongate. ISBN . 9780857866165
Price, Emmett G. (2010). Encyclopedia of African American Music. Oxford: Greenwood. ISBN . 9780313341991
Erlewine, Michael; Bogdanov, Vladimir; Woodstra, Chris; Yanow, Scott, eds. (2002). All Music Guide to Jazz (4th ed.). San Francisco: Backbeat. ISBN . 9780879307172
Schuller, Gunther (1999). Musings (1st Da Capo Press ed.). New York: Da Capo. ISBN . 9780306809026
Kirchner, Bill (2005). The Oxford companion to jazz. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN . 9780195183597
Cooke, Mervyn; Horn, David (2002). The Cambridge Companion to Jazz. Cambridge Companions to Music (1 ed.). New York: Cambridge University Press. ISBN . 9780521663205
Silver, Horace (2006). . Berkeley, California: University of California Press. p. Let's Get to the Nitty Gritty: The autobiography of Horace Silver 211. ISBN . 9780520243743
Lambert, Philip (2013). Alec Wilder. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. p. 63. ISBN . 9780252094842
Do Nascimento Silva, Luis Carlos (2000). Put Your Dreams Away. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. ISBN . 0313310556
Summers, Claude (2004). The Queer Encyclopedia of Music, Dance & Musical Theater (1st ed.). San Francisco: Cleis Press. pp. 165-166. ISBN . 9781573441988
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