Walter S. Hartley, February 21, 1927 - June 30, 2016

Date: July 5th, 2016

His works grew to over 300, dating from 1949 to 2010, and most of these were published. The pieces he wrote for saxophone and low brass significantly expanded the repertoire available to performers on those instruments. His music has been performed by many ensembles, including the National Symphony Orchestra, Oklahoma City Symphony, Eastman-Rochester Orchestra and the Eastman Wind Ensemble. His Chamber Symphony of 1954 was commissioned by the Koussevitsky Foundation, his Concert Overture for orchestra received a prize from the National Symphony Orchestra in 1955, and his Sinfonia No. 3 for brass choir won for him the 1964 Conn Award. He received many commissions from college and high school musical organizations and from U.S. service bands.

He and the former Sandra Mount were married on June 17, 1960. In 2004 they moved to Charlotte to be near their daughter, Carol, and her family. Walter received a warm welcome from the Music Department of the University of North Carolina Charlotte. His association with the department included a year as composer in residence and an opportunity to compose “Sinfonia Caroliniana” for the University’s Wind Ensemble. The chance to work with faculty and students there and to attend skilled and spirited performances of his works gave him great personal and professional satisfaction.

Walter is survived by his wife, Sandra; sister, Dr. Janet Hartley (Torg Frederickson) of Myrtle Beach, SC; daughters Carol Hartley (Thomas Cole) and Lois (Dennis) Urbanek of Fairfax, VA; and grandchildren Matthew, Joseph, and Charles Urbanek and Sarah and Patrick Cole.

Further information about unpublished pieces may be obtained by contacting the composer's family

« Back to All News