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“200 Motels”, but no room for the rowdy…

A funny thing happened last night during the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s performance of 200 Motels. The audience turned on itself. Before the show, the chorus warmed up the crowd with some catcalls, and that prompted the room to loosen up. The vibe was fun. The orchestra did a wave. The audience hooted and hollered like […]

Piece for Heat Wave:

1. Dump raw sewage into the Hudson 2. Let currents take it round Manhattan 3. Inhale.

If You Had 30″ To Write A Piece…

…what would you do? Okay, you get as long as you want to write the piece, but it can only last 30″. That’s the concept behind the Microscores Project, which started at CalArts and has performed all over the place. Over the years, they’ve garnered some fascinating pieces by folks like Harold Budd and Pauline […]

Secret Ingredient Suggestions

This year’s Iron Composer Omaha competition is open nationally to people between the ages of 18-26. First prize is $500 and loads of bragging rights. Because we were focusing ARTSaha! 2007 on Futurism, we settled on the main motif of The Jetsons theme song as the secret ingredient. The five finalists had five hours to […]

The Future of Music in 5 & 50:

What will music sound like in 50 years? What will your music sound like in 5 years? Back in 1994, these composers weighed in on what music would be like in 150 years: Milton Babbitt Pierre Boulez Harrison Birtwistle Brian Ferneyhough Steve Reich Franco Donatoni Louis Andriessen

Secret Ingredient Nominations

ANALOG arts ensemble has just announced its instant composition contest, Iron Composer Omaha. Five finalists will be selected to compete. At noon on September 11, we’ll unveil the instrumentation that they’ll be writing for and a secret ingredient. We’ve announced that the ingredient ‘could be any kind of musical raw material, such as a chord […]

Skeptical Spectralist

Sometime, not too long ago, I seem to remember a discussion of the definition of spectral music running in the comment section. The latest issue of Skeptical Inquirer magazine includes an interview with composer Joshua Fineberg, who gives it a go: We are creatures that are tremendously sensitive to timbre because the vowels of language depend on […]

Big Five à la Kirshnit

In an indulgent little piece in today’s NY Sun, Fred Kirshnit reorders the historical construct of the Big Five as Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, LA, Chicago, Boston. His thoughs on the NY Phil:  Not even the best orchestra on the plaza.   Limiting our discussion to the modern era, the local Phil has been deficient for a […]

4 sentences about classical music that I don’t mind reading

There seemed to be an universal agreement with Soho the Dog when he posted his famous 8 sentences, but on half of them, he was either being way too literal or just wrong.   “Jazz is America’s classical music.” Yeah sure, Johns Adams & Corigliano and their peers are this continent’s contributions to the field […]