Music at Columbia: The First 100 Years

Beginnings > Indian Suite

Edward Alexander MacDowell (1861-1908)

Second Suite for Orchestra, Op. 48, the "Indian Suite"

Autograph manuscript, composed between 1891 and 1895

Edward MacDowell Papers, Rare Book and Manuscript Library






MacDowell’s “Indian Suite,” composed primarily using themes found in the music of Native Americans of the Northeast, was a success with audiences and critics. MacDowell himself wrote in 1903 that “of all my music, the ‘Dirge’ in the “Indian” Suite pleases me most. It affects me deeply and did when I was writing it. In it an Indian woman laments the death of her son; but to me, as I wrote it, it seemed to express a world-sorrow rather than a particularised grief.”


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