Monday, October 3, 2016

K. David Van Hoesen (1926-2016)

Bassoonist and teacher, K. David Van Hoesen left us today. He passed away in the company of his family in Pittsburgh. He was 90 years old.

He was my musical "father". He taught me so much about the bassoon and also about music in general. He showed me what great teaching was all about.

He played much of his career in the Rochester Philharmonic.  

His sound was beautiful, smooth and even. Listen to this excerpt from William Schuman's "New England Triptych" and you will hear a good example.

Here is an interview  (see item 12 in the Table of Contents) I did with him shortly after he retired from teaching at the Eastman School of Music. In it he discusses the bassoon, music and his early life.


  1. No sound like his.... I loved playing with him a few years ago at Lake Placid. Even at 80+ he played beautifully. Most rewarding Beethoven Septet I've done.

  2. KDVH and Sprenkle shared so many pedagogical concepts: musical line, rhythmical fingering, articulation concepts; it wasn't always possible to know which one of them was the original source! They played together for so many decades,and must have talked shop regularly. We are all affected by the loss of this great bassoon pedagogue. Thank you, Barry, for posting the Schuman; so good to sit and listen, and remember.

  3. Hi Mr. Stees, this is Sam writing, I was wondering if you have a copy of the interview you did with Mr. Van Hoesen before he retired from teaching at Eastman. The link to the IDRS website no longer works but I would still love to see what he said.