Manuscripts/Mixed Material Letter from Aaron Copland, 1978.
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Carlos Chavez and I had been friends and composer-colleagues for half a century. His role during that period as composer and conductor and his country's chief animator of musical life is now a part of music history.
It is impossible to imagine the Mexican musical scene of the past fifty years without his leadership. He and I felt ourselves brothers-in-arms, desirous of having the musico-artistic life of our two countries join the twentieth century.
His contribution as conductor, teacher and leader of the musico-cultural life of Mexico for half a century will always be remembered. But most of all, Carlos Chavez would wish to be remembered, and rightfully so, as composer. As I once wrote: "Whatever his musical style, harsh or mellifluous, it is the music of a personality, one of the most striking of our time."