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340 W. 57th Street, 12B, New York, NY 10019

Jerry Bowles
(212) 582-3791

Managing Editor:
David Salvage

Contributing Editors:

Galen H. Brown
Evan Johnson
Ian Moss
Lanier Sammons
Deborah Kravetz
Eric C. Reda
Christian Hertzog
(San Diego)
Jerry Zinser
(Los Angeles)

Web & Wiki Master:
Jeff Harrington

Latest Posts

Love and Cow Bells
Sorceress of the New Piano
Well, That Was Fun
Naxos Dreaming
Reich@70: Let the Celebrations Begin
The Bi-Coastal Jefferson Friedman
Violins Invade Indianapolis
John Cage (born Los Angeles, 5 September 1912; died New York, 12 August 1992).
The People United Will Never Be Divided
Attention Sequenza21 Shoppers


Record companies, artists and publicists are invited to submit CDs to be considered for review. Send to: Jerry Bowles, Editor, Sequenza 21, 340 W. 57th Street, 12B, New York, NY 10019

Thursday, September 01, 2005
They're Trying to Wash Us Away

Two of our Mississippi bloggers--Alan Theisen and Everette Minchew--have checked in. They're okay, thanks goodness, but the scenes on the news are becoming more unbearable by the moment. The music has stopped in the Crescent City. We now know exactly how well-prepared our government is to deal with an assault--natural or manmade--on a major American city. It's not a reassuring performance.
A Rush of Paws

Two terrific new posts over in the Composers Forum this morning. First, Alex Shapiro on why you should pay attention the next time your cat walks across the piano keys and then Galen Brown on why Kyle Gann is such an indispensible online presence that he's practically "the Rush Limbaugh" of blogging. Galen is trying to be nice, I think, and presumably isn't talking about the fat, stupid druggie part.

Poor Stephanie Lubkowski is in her first week at NEC and having ear problems.
Rhythm Is It!

The search is on. As a recent New York Times article said - "orchestras around the country....are hunting for the neophytes, the dabblers and mainly the ungray."

Is the feature film the way to attract those new concertgoers? Disney and Stokowski did it with Fantasia. Now Sir Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic are trying to do it. Their film Rhythm Is It! mixes Stravinsky's Rite of Spring with specially commissioned music from German composer Karim Sebastian Ellis and rock from the Berlin underground band The Wickeds.

Read the full story, and listen to some audio files, at Rhythm Is It! - the new Fantasia?

Last Night in L.A. - Getting Ready for Next Season

Summertime in Los Angeles isn�t absolutely devoid of contemporary music, it just seems that way. The Phil�s concerts at Hollywood Bowl are even less interesting than the concert schedules of the New York Philharmonic, picking one bastion of century-old music. At the Bowl these years, doing �Three Places� by Ives is about as adventurous as the programming gets, and it does something like that only rarely.

But of course if the Phil has to perform two different programs each week, sometimes only two days apart, often with two different conductors, at least one of whom is new to the orchestra --- well, in such circumstances it�s understandable that the programming emphasizes the familiar, the comfortable, the works which can readily be brushed into condition for performance outdoors. And since the Phil charges close to Disney Hall scale for tickets to the Bowl, they want the ticket buyers to be comfortable with the programs, an attitude which also emphasizes the tried and true.

The other orchestra, the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, has the role of providing the orchestra for the pops and musicals concerts. So we rarely go to the Bowl, getting our musical �fix� from two of the smaller organizations around the county, both of which do most of their work in and around Pasadena and points east, but which periodically come downtown.

But we get ready for the coming Phil season. The tickets to our Philharmonic subscriptions were delivered last week, and this week Phil subscribers get to order additional tickets before they are offered for sale to the public. I�m sure that many other subscribers ordered additional tickets to be able to hear either of the Beethoven Symphony cycles that Salonen will offer next season, one cycle of Beethoven only, the other which combines one or two Beethoven symphonies with another work which Salonen feels resonates with the Beethoven. But our tastes are a little different than that, so we made sure we got tickets for two more programs of the Minimalist Jukebox programs, for the performances to complete the cycles of Shostakovich symphonies and Shostakovich string quartets, and for two or three additional programs where there was a composer we wanted to hear.

The Musical Jukebox series is really getting close to deserving the name of �Festival�. There are three orchestral programs, which were announced as part of the season; Reinbert de Leeuw, Stefan Asbury, and John Adams will serve as conductors with music of Andriessen, Part, Reich, Glass, and Adams.

Also announced was Donald Crockett conducting the Contemporary Music Ensemble of USC in performance of the symphony-film �Decasia� with music by Michael Gordon and film by Bill Morrison. To this they have added three non-subscription programs. In one, a set of musicians from CalArts will perform Riley�s �In C�. In another, Glenn Branca will perform/lead his Symphony 13 �Hallucination City� (for 100 electric guitars). In a third, four of the best pianists in the city who collaborate in a set of piano recitals under the name PianoSpheres will collaborate in a joint program.

The Branca and the PianoSpheres concerts are bargain priced at $10 per ticket, tickets which go on sale next week. Going to a Disney Hall concert for the price of going to a movie will certainly be a treat. It�s good to be in a city that recognizes live composers.
When in Rome...

Is style dead? Elodie Lauten thinks so...Over in the Composers Forum, Corey Dargel explains everything you wanted to know about podcasts but were afraid to ask.

Elsewhere, Alex Ross's feline friend Maulina is sitting in the blogger chair this week and doing a outstanding job...Kyle Gann has declared September "Woman Composers" month on Postclassic radio.

And, speaking of women and style, a female friend wonders about the authenticity of those splendid bikini waxes in the new HBO series Rome.
Chop Sticks

The word of the day is "piano." Lawrence Dillon begins with a great keyboard-related zinger from Uncle Miltie Babbitt...Pianist Jeffrey Biegel weighs in on Greg Sandow's take on Allan Kozinn's now well-traveled piece on how big orchestras don't like new music...Pliable is having a Bill Evans fest (see below) and I don't care what anybody says; that dangling cigarette is way cool.

On the breaking news front, Augusta Read Thomas has begun a three-year term as Chair of the American Music Center's (AMC) Board of Directors. She succeeds composer John Kennedy, who had held the position since its creation in 2004. Though the organization has had five female executive directors in its 66-year history, Thomas is the first woman to serve as AMC's top representative on the board.
Bill Evans - the Classical Connection

It is a mark of the importance of jazz pianist Bill Evans (right) that Gyorgy Ligeti cited him as one of the influences on his seminal Etudes for solo piano.

Ligeti's Etudes fit the Bill is a seventy-sixth anniversary tribute to Evans on an overgrown path that explores his classical connections from Darius Milhaud and Dmitry Kabalevsky to Stravinsky and Ligeti.


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