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Spencer, Gordon (1933-2018)



  • Existence: 1933 - 2018


Gordon Spencer wais a white radio program host, and radio reporter, actor, teacher, DJ, and writer. He was born in 1934 and raised in Pittsburgh. He attended the Sanford School, a private college-preparatory school in Hockessin, Delaware, for middle and high school and graduated in 1951. From an early age, Spencer was exposed to classical music and musicians in the home and by attending Orchestra Children’s Concerts. His grandfather was the conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra where his father played viola. As a radio host, he specialized in classical and jazz music on network and local stations in New York City, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Albuquerque, and Genoa, Italy. He interviewed famous musicians including Ravi Shankar, Leopold Stokowski, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Billy Holiday, Moondog, Philip Glass, Tony Scott, and many others. In the 1950s, he acted in New York City in Off-Broadway and summer stock plays, later expanding to movies and television, until his final performance in 2012. He wrote radio scripts, theater reviews, prose, poetry, and kept journals. He was fluent in Italian and spent a year teaching in Genoa, Italy. Spencer died in 2018.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Gordon Spencer Collection

Identifier: MS-0385
Scope and Contents The Gordon Spencer Collection was a gift of Hannelore Rogers in September 2019. It contains personal card, correspondence, a curriculum vitae with letters of recommendation, notes, planners, other documents, and theater programs. Writings include novels, short stories, radio scripts, sketches, and poems. Of note are Spencer’s interviews in Note Book with Louis Armstrong in the May 1983 issue; his interview with Phillip Glass in the June 1983 issue; an interview with Billie Holiday;...
Dates: 1933 - 2018