How do you pronounce Charles Wuorinen?
July 16, 2009 8:00 PM   Subscribe

How do you pronounce composer Charles Wuorinen's name? Which syllable is accented?
posted by mediareport to Media & Arts (8 answers total)
According to this article, it's ['vuorinin]. And according to a commenter on this page, "Wuorinen is pronounced “Wor-nen” (there’s actually a schwa between the two syllables - a swallowed vowel - but I’m not going to figure out how to write an upside-down e)."
posted by ocherdraco at 8:04 PM on July 16, 2009

(Though I will correct him that a schwa is not a "swallowed vowel." It is, rather, "An unstressed and toneless neutral vowel sound in any language, often but not necessarily a mid-central vowel. Such vowels are often transcribed with the symbol <ə>, regardless of their actual phonetic value.")
posted by ocherdraco at 8:05 PM on July 16, 2009

And to give a ridiculously complete answer to your question, Charles is something like [ˈtʃ͡ɑːɻls].
posted by ocherdraco at 8:07 PM on July 16, 2009

I saw a concert of his music about 2 years ago, and the conductor pronounced it "Woor-nen".
posted by kuujjuarapik at 8:33 PM on July 16, 2009

I seem to recall people (musicians) referring to him as WOOR-(i-)nen, although, the "correct" (meaning traditional) pronunciation is probably indeed VOOR-i-nen. Can't say how the composer himself pronounces it, but as I recall, on a somewhat tangential note, the man has an incredible ear, so I don't know, maybe it bugs him every time people mispronounce his name.
posted by Busoni at 3:39 AM on July 17, 2009

Actually, on second thought, I think the composer I'm thinking of (the one with the finely-tuned ear) is William Bolcom, but nonetheless, I recall Wuorinen being pronounced WOOR-i-nen, not VOOR-i-nen.
posted by Busoni at 4:02 AM on July 17, 2009

He himself pronounces it "WOOR-uh-nin" to rhyme with "POOR-uh-pin." And the "uh" is very very brief, which is probably why the person ocherdraco quotes describes it as a "swallowed vowel."

He also has an astonishing beard, straight out of an Edward Lear illustration. Interesting character.
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:04 AM on July 17, 2009

Thanks, y'all. I was kinda hoping for something like yours, Sidhedevil, so double thanks.
posted by mediareport at 8:52 AM on July 20, 2009

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