Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Bored By SUDOKU? For A More Challenging (And Spiritual) Anti-Aging Experience, Try Contemporary Classical Music!


Metrical pattern to a 3-part, 12-bar trombone 'chant' from Morton Feldman's Violin and Orchestra (1979) [ca. 60'].

"Morton Feldman's late style is well represented [by] two extended works, Violin and Orchestra (1979) and Coptic Light (1985). The first piece, like several other works Feldman composed for solo instrument and orchestra, superficially resembles a concerto, for its focus is on the violin throughout. However, there are no virtuosic passages or cadenzas for the soloist, and the orchestra's activity is fairly constant and independent, admitting little of what could be called repartee or accompaniment. Even so, the shifting layers, rhythmic pulses, and shimmering harmonics still seem to be derived from the soloist's part, albeit cryptically, and violinist Isabelle Faust seems merely at the forefront of the orchestra's evolving textures. Where Violin and Orchestra is spare and fragmentary, Coptic Light is monolithic and hypnotic, and functions as a static mass of sound built up through many small cycles, stretched over a long time period. Yet an impression of vast stillness is created, which concentrates the listener's attention on details in the moment, rather than on what came before or may happen later. This recording by the Symphonie Orchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, conducted by Peter Rundel, is of a live performance from 2002, and the sound is clear and satisfactory, in spite of a few distracting coughs." -- Blair Sanderson, All Music Guide


Happy Holidays!

[Mr Feldman aspired to be Western music's greatest Jewish composer.]

Morton Feldman
Location: Persepolis, Iran
Date: August 1977
Box 1; Item 47

Photo credit: (c) Jan Williams 1977. All rights reserved. Via Music Library, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York. With thanks.


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