Glass studied at the Juilliard School of Music where the keyboard was his main instrument. His composition teachers included Vincent Persichetti and William Bergsma. Fellow students included Steve Reich and Peter Schickele. In 1959, he was a winner in the BMI Foundation's BMI Student Composer Awards, an international prize for young composers. In the summer of 1960, he studied with Darius Milhaud at the summer school of the Aspen Music Festival and composed a violin concerto for a fellow student, Dorothy Pixley-Rothschild. After leaving Juilliard in 1962, Glass moved to Pittsburgh and worked as a school-based composer-in-residence in the public school system, composing various choral, chamber and orchestral music.
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