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The Harvard Concise Dictionary of Music and Musicians

Edited by Don Michael Randel

ISBN 9780674009783

Publication date: 10/30/2002

This new compact guide to the history and performance of music is both authoritative and a pleasure to use. With entries drawn and condensed from the widely acclaimed The New Harvard Dictionary of Music and its companion The Harvard Biographical Dictionary of Music, it is a dependable reference for home and classroom and for professional and amateur musicians.

This concise dictionary offers definitions of musical terms; succinct characterizations of the various forms of musical composition; entries that identify individual operas, oratorios, symphonic poems, and other works; illustrated descriptions of instruments; and capsule summaries of the lives and careers of composers, performers, and theorists. Like its distinguished parent volumes, The Harvard Concise Dictionary of Music and Musicians provides information on all periods in music history, with particularly comprehensive coverage of the twentieth century.

Clearly written and based on vast expertise, The Harvard Concise Dictionary of Music and Musicians is an invaluable handbook for everyone who cares about music.


  • Considering scope, reliability, and cost, this is the preferred single-volume music reference for college libraries, even though it overlaps the works on which it is based, which are in most academic collections. It will appeal to undergraduates and students majoring outside music, and will give reference librarians a promising first port of call for many types of inquiry.

    —G.A. Marco, Choice


  • Don Michael Randel, former Professor of Music at Cornell University and Professor of Music and President of the University of Chicago, is President of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Book Details

  • 768 pages
  • 1-3/8 x 6-1/4 x 8-7/8 inches
  • Belknap Press