Contact Information
Phone: (304) 293.4503
415-A Creative Arts Center

John Beall

Professor – Composition

Composer John Beall studied composition at Baylor University with Charles Eakin and Richard Willis, and completed doctoral study at the Eastman School of Music, where he was a student of Samuel Adler. In 1972 he received the Louis Lane Prize for his orchestral work, Lament for Those Lost in the War, and in 1973, the Howard Hanson Prize for his Concerto for Piano and Wind Orchestra. Since 1978, Dr. Beall has been Professor of Music and Composer-in-Residence at West Virginia University. Summers since 1992 have been spent teaching at the Interlochen Center for the Arts in Michigan.

Beall has received commissions from the National Endowment for the Arts (two awards), several universities, the West Virginia Music Teachers Association (Composer of the Year, 1981), Radiological Consultants Association of West Virginia, and the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra. Performances have come from the Dallas, Rochester, Pittsburgh, and West Virginia Symphonies, the Bach Choir of Pittsburgh, chamber organizations such as the Interlochen Faculty Players, Quorum, Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, Claremont Quintet, Laureate Wind Quintet, Rutgers Wind Quintet, Georgia Wind Quintet, Savannah Wind Quintet, Aeolian Chamber Players, and various university ensembles and professional soloists.

In 1985 Beall completed his Symphony No.1 while a fellow at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Study and Conference Center at Bellagio, Italy, and at Yaddo, Saratoga Springs, N.Y. The work was premiered by the West Virginia University Symphony Orchestra under Rachael Worby in 1986. In 1990, he was named Benedum Distinguished Scholar for the Arts and Humanities by West Virginia University. He is an annual winner of Serious Music Awards from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP). His two-act opera based on Edith Wharton’s novel, Ethan Frome with production was performed as a part of the Centennial celebrations of the West Virginia University School of Music in November 1997, and recorded for video broadcast over Public Television. His music is published by MMB Music, Inc., Carl Fischer, and Southern Music Co. Recordings are on Crystal Records and Cambria Master Recordings. He is a member of ASCAP, Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), Society of Composers (SCI, Region III), and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.

List of Works:

Large Ensembles

Essay for Orchestra, 1964-65
Songs of Autumn, 1965-66
Lament for Those Lost in the War, 1972
Concerto for Piano and Wind Orchestra, 1973
Concerto for Brass Quintet and Wind Orchestra, 1978
Celebration Music, 1985
Symphony No. 1, 1985
Mountain Music, 1987
Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Orchestra, 1990-91 (also scored for wind orchestra, 1994)
Cortege, Processional for Orchestra, 1991
Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, 1998


Songs of Autumn (in piano reduction), 1966
Rilke Songs, 1974
Hammarskjold Songs, 1967-83
Psalm 51, SATB, 1977
Merwin Songs: Book I, 1982-83
Psalm 19, SATB with organ, 1988
Merwin Songs: Book II, 1988
The Lord Is Good, SATB with organ, 1989
Psalm 84, SATB with organ, 1989
Anglican Mass, STB solo, SATB, organ, and orchestra, 1978 -1991
Ride On, Ride On, SATB with organ, 1991
Come, Thou Holy Spirit, SATB with organ, 1991
All Praise Be Thine, O Risen Christ, SATB with organ, 1992
Merwin Songs: Book III,1993
Ethan Frome, Opera in Two Acts, 1994-97


Sonatina, 1966
Partita, 1967
Aria and Variations, 1969-72
Black Raindrops, 1977
Piano Fantasy, 1980
Capriccio for Piano 4 Hands,1981
Harpsichord Fantasy, 1982
Summer Pieces, 1984
Toccata and Fugue on Deus Tuorum Militum, for Organ, 1988
Sonata for Piano, 1992-94

Chamber Music

Sonata for Alto Saxophone and Piano,1974
Sonata for Violin and Piano,1976
Sextet for Piano and Woodwind Quintet, 1976
String Quartet, 1982
Trio Fantasy for Oboe, Bassoon, and Piano, 1981
On Chestnut Ridge, Quartet for Violin, Clarinet, Cello, and Piano, 1982
Sonata for Cello and Piano,1984
Celebration Fanfare, 1986
Variations on John Henry, for Three Violins (Intermediate Level), 1987
Trio for Violin, Cello, and Piano, 1991
Shaker Tunes, Free Variations for Woodwind Quintet, 1992 (also sextet version with alto saxophone)
Whitewater, 1994, for woodwind quintet & string quartet
Breakers, 1999, for Flute and Piano
Wondrous Love: Variations for Viola and Piano, 1999
Terra Firma, 1998-99, Trio for Flute, Violoncello, and Piano
The River, 2000, for string Quartet

List of Recorded Works

Chamber Music

The Laureate Wind Quintet and the West Virginia University String Quartet, Lawrence Christianson, conductor- on Cambria CD1104
On Chestnut Ridge
Stephen Beall, violin; John Weigand, clarinet; William Skidmore, violoncello; Carol Beall, piano – on Cambria CD1104
Sonata for Violoncello and Piano
William Skidmore, violoncello; Carol Beall, piano – on Cambria CD1104
Shaker Tunes: Free Variations for Woodwind Sextet
The Laureate Wind Quintet with David Hastings, alto saxophone – on Cambria CD1104
Barn Dance from Mountain Music
Stephen Beall, violin; Carol Beall, piano – on Cambria CD1104
Sextet for Piano and Woodwind Quintet
The Claremont Quintet with Steven Herbert Smith, piano – on Crystal LP S255

Piano Music

Sonata for Piano
Steven Herbert Smith, piano – on Cambria CD1105
Summer Pieces (Glass Stems of the Clouds, Early One Summer, Wolf of Summer)
Steven Herbert Smith, piano – on Cambria CD1105
Piano Fantasy
Steven Herbert Smith, piano – on Cambria CD1105
Black Raindrops
Steven Herbert Smith, piano – on Cambria CD1105
Capriccio for Piano 4 Hands
Carol Beall and Lucia Unrau, piano- on Cambria CD1105
Other compositions on the works list are also recorded and available from the composer.