Lou Harrison at 100 

Source: The New York Times.

Many of the musical and philosophical characteristics that defined Lou Harrison, who would have turned 100 this year, as a quintessential American maverick composer come through in “La Koro Sutro” (“The Heart Sutra”).

“La Koro Sutro” is ambitious and large-scale, lasting nearly 30 minutes, yet somehow personal and modest, too, with a kind of innately American directness. The musical language is steeped in Asian elements, ancient modes, pentatonic scales, chantlike choral writing and systems of “just” (what Harrison considered the more natural) tuning, rather than the tempered intonation common to Western music for centuries.

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