12 boxes (9 linear ft.)..
Arranged into the following series: 1. Music scores; 2. Recordings; 3. Writings: Monographs; 4. Writings: Articles; 5. Anthologies of writings and scores; 6. Concert programs and related correspondence; 7. Writings and recordings by others. Dates range from 1964 to 2010.
12 boxes of journal and monograph publications, photocopied autograph scores, recordings, concert programs and correspondence, document the oeuvre of composer and musicologist Otto Laske (1936- ). The collection has been arranged into seven series: Series 1, Music Scores (1964-95), consists mostly of photocopies of autograph manuscripts by Laske. Series 2, Recordings (1966-97), contains compact discs and reel-to-reel tapes of recorded Laske compositions. Series 3, Writings: Monographs (1972-97), mainly contains published works, as well as typescripts of Music and Mind (2 volumes) and The Imaginative Self: Essays 1993-1994. Series 4, Writings: Articles (1972-2010), includes published copies of musicological journal issues. Series 5, Anthologies of Writings and Scores (1964-95), consists of bound volumes that appear to have been compiled by Laske himself--eight volumes of photocopied scores (some grouped by genre, some grouped by date range), and two volumes of photocopied writings ("Readings in Cognitive Musicology From the Work of Otto Laske."). Series 6, Concert Programs and Related Correspondence (1967-2000), includes professional communications relating to performances, symposiums, and commissions, as well as concert programs and newspaper clippings. Series 7, Writings and Recordings by Others (1965-95), consists mostly of musicological journals and monographs as well as twentieth-century music scores.
Otto Ernst Laske was born on April 23rd, 1936, in Oels (Olesnica), Silesia. Together with his mother and sister, he escaped from the oncoming Soviet army in 1945, which brought him to Lilienthal, near Bremen (Germany), the city in which his mother was born. There, he soon started playing the piano. At age 11, he met his father, who had been a prisoner of war in the Soviet Union; still in a war trauma, Laske tried himself in writing poetry from age 13 on. Although he temporarily interrupted his piano studies and, thus, his musical activities, he never lost the contact to the music, as his family was very music-loving. After a social-science diploma at the business high school in Bremen (1955) and after one year of administrative work, Laske started studying business administration in Göttingen in 1956. There, stimulated by the Sociological Institute, he started research on sociology. This interest in sociology brought him to the Goethe University in Frankfurt / Main and the Institute for Social Research (Institut für Sozialforschung) with Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno. While he abandoned his business studies, his sociological interest led him to studying philosophy, which he started (after a second, classical high school diploma) in 1958. In addition, he studied musicology from 1960 on (with professors Helmuth Osthoff, Friedrich Gennrich, and Lothar Hoffmann-Erbrecht) as well as English and American Language and Literature from 1964 on. After intensive studies of Greek philosophy, especially supported by Bruno Liebrucks, Laske wrote his dissertation under the supervision of Theodor W. Adorno on the dialectics of Plato and the early Hegel, which he completed in 1966.
During his academic studies, specifically from 1961 on, Laske continued his music-practical studies, as he picked up composition and studied Hindemth's Untersuchung im Tonsatz. From 1963 to 1966, Laske studied composition primarily with Konrad Lechner: first, at the Frankfurt Musikhochschule and later at the Academy of Music in Darmstadt. Besides his studies with Lechner, who specifically continued the tradition of Guillaume de Machaut and Anton Webern, the Darmstadt Summer Courses were very stimulating for Laske's musical developments, where he met composers such as Stockhausen, Ligeti, Boulez, and Babbitt. In Darmstadt, he also met Gottfried Michael Koenig in 1964, which became most crucial for the development of Laske's composition theory and Cognitive Musicology. After completing his dissertation, Laske was a Fulbright Scholar from 1966 to 1968 at the New England Conservatory in Boston (USA), where he graduated with a Master of Music degree in composition. He then gained teaching positions, each for one year, as visiting professor of philosophy in Ontario (Canada) and as visiting professor of musicology (specifically the music of the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, and the Baroque) at McGill University in Montreal (Canada). Invited by Koenig, Laske taught and studied at the Institute of Sonology in Utrecht (Netherlands) from 1970 to 1975. During the time period from 1971 to 1974, he was holding a fellowship from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation) for the project "The Logical Structure of a Generative Grammar of Music." Besides his collaborations with Koenig and Barry Truax, the training in a classical electronic studio became very important for Laske. Here, influenced by informal studies of computer science (1972-1974), he developed the foundations for his Cognitive Musicology.
After two additional years of studies (1975-1977) in psychology and computer science as a post-doctoral fellow at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and after completing a year as guest professor at the University of Illinois in Urbana (1978-1979), Otto Laske's research was extensively focused on Artificial Intelligence. He worked from 1980 through 1985 as software engineer and from 1986 through 1991 -- especially in Switzerland, Germany, and The Netherlands -- as a consultant for the development of expert systems. In addition, he was a guest professor of computer science for one year at Boston College in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. Already since 1984, he was more interested in the process through which one gathers expert knowledge (to eventually create expert systems with that knowledge) than in programming. From 1981 through 1991, Laske was, initially with Curtis Roads, artistic director of the New England Computer Music Association (NEWCOMP). During this time, he organized 65 concerts for mixed media and taught courses on computer-assisted composition in Stuttgart (1981), Darmstadt (1981), Boston (1981-1984) and Karlsruhe (1988/89). In 1992, he turned towards developmental and clinical psychology (Harvard University), to gain the theoretical basis for a theory of coaching. From 1996 to 1999, Laske studied clinical psychology at the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology and received a Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) with his dissertation on "Transformative Effects of Coaching on Executives' Professional Agenda" (1999). He founded the consulting form Laske and Associates LLC (2000), and later the Interdevelopmental Institute (2004) -- an institute for advanced coaching and cadre education. As an artist, Laske has an extensive compositional work, a large output of poetry, and he dedicated himself in recent years to visual arts, exploring especially the link between music and images, digital paintings, and visual music animations. Much of his compositional work informed his research on creative processes in music. A Festschrift was published in recognition of his scholarly and compositional work (Tabor 1999). -- Biography by Nico Schüler.
Open for research; see library staff for access.
Unpublished finding aid available in repository.