Lawrence Dillon@Sequenza21.com

"There are no two points so distant from one another that they cannot be connected by a single straight line -- and an infinite number of curves."

Composer Lawrence Dillon has produced an extensive body of work, from brief solo pieces to a full-length opera. Three disks of his music are due out in 2010 on the Bridge, Albany and Naxos labels. In the past year, he has had commissions from the Emerson String Quartet, the Cassatt String Quartet, the Mansfield Symphony, the Boise Philharmonic, the Salt Lake City Symphony, the Ravinia Festival, the Daedalus String Quartet, the Kenan Institute for the Arts, the University of Utah and the Idyllwild Symphony Orchestra.

Although he lost 50% of his hearing in a childhood illness, Dillon began composing as soon as he started piano lessons at the age of seven. In 1985, he became the youngest composer to earn a doctorate at The Juilliard School, and was shortly thereafter appointed to the Juilliard faculty. Dillon is now Composer in Residence at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, where he has served as Music Director of the Contemporary Ensemble, Assistant Dean of Performance, and Interim Dean of the School of Music. He was the Featured American Composer in the February 2006 issue of Chamber Music magazine.


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Friday, April 01, 2005
The 80s: pivotal works

Thanks to the help of Sequenza21 readers, I have a list of pivotal works from the 70s. Time to take a crack at the 1980s. Again, these are pieces I think had widespread influence on many composers, even though some of them didnít have much influence on me personally:

Laurie Anderson: O Superman (1981)
Steve Reich: The Desert Music (1983)
Arvo Part: Te Deum (1984)
Morton Feldman: Piano and String Quartet (1985)
John Adams: Harmonielehre (1985)

Much to my surprise, Iím finding it very difficult to come up with works from the late 1980s that Iím certain belong on this list. Can anyone help? A lot of the pieces I thought could be included turned out to be from the early 90s. Maybe I should give in to the temptation to include the same composer more than once. But in any case, I may be missing a pivotal work from Downtown and from Neo-Complexity land.

And does anyone know just when and how the craze for big, steroidal orchestral works got started? I think I must have missed that chapter.