“The piece is whimsical: it hops back and forth between Winne-the-Pooh-like expressions and the inner world of a child—I allowed the music to take itself where it wanted to go.”
The music makes no apologies for its origins. Despite its genesis in an age of indulgence, it is so much more than merely pleasing; I hope you’ll also hear its daring, experimental side.
Saunders makes us aware of sound as color, and especially as the freshly intense color that comes from new and carefully prescribed performing techniques.
The compositional dialogue between past and present resonates throughout tonight’s program, not only in reverence to the spirit of Bach, but as reassurance of his relevancy in the future.
The people, objects, and animals in the theatre of our dreams are portrayed by the god’s children, who are re-imagined as messengers of artistic inspiration in the context of our script.
A piece will generally start out from a very small idea, which will then be progressively varied, extended, and repeated, following rules of change similar to those by which a fern unfurls and grows.
Female shaman and blessed fool, she is an extraordinary figure to have arrived in a time of cynicism, lethargy, irresponsibility, and confusion, but all the more vital for that.
Tallis was ever the musical pragmatist, responding to the fickle fluctuations of liturgical necessity; Byrd walked the thin line between perception and persecution as a follower of the old faith.
Her music generally has something of the glaze of film, the sense that, though the expressive gestures may be violent or disturbing, they are unfolding somewhere apart and unreachable.
This cyclical journey takes us through the whole gamut of musical emotion, moving from the sumptuous, sensuous polyphony of Orlande de Lassus to the ascetic purity of Arvo Pärt.
To some extent, this “new type of music” is very old, a renewal of what existed in Europe before the Renaissance, neither grounded nor driven by the harmonic forces, whose unfolding is not rational.
“From time to time ideas come for my next work which as I see it will be a large work which will always be in progress and will never be finished” - John Cage to Pierre Boulez, May 1953
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