A Cultural Conversation With Pierre Boulez

From WSJ.com:

Among musicians and concert-goers there are many who accuse Mr. Boulez of foisting the musical equivalent of gray concrete towers on them by composing and promoting pieces that are unlovable, incomprehensible and, in the words of one recent author, “willfully ugly.” A founding member of the Darmstadt School, a group of composers who came of age in the years after World War II, Mr. Boulez helped set the agenda of modernist music, rejecting tonality and classical forms in favor of new styles that employ exquisitely intricate systems of organizing notes and yet sound, to the uninitiated, bewildering.

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Telluric Currents, Series 3 to Take Place at Brooklyn’s I-Beam

Coming to the IBeam:

Continuing the new concert series curated by Brooklyn-based composer/clarinetist Jeremiah Cymerman, the thirdd installment of the Telluric Currents series will take place January 15th & 16th at Brooklyn’s I-Beam.

Celebrating the diversity and creativity of New York’s underground musicians, each night of the series will present different groups of musicians who masterfully blur the lines between composition and improvisation, acoustic and electronic music, subtlety and extremity. The current experimental music scene in New York is as vibrant as ever and the Telluric Currents Concert Series seeks to pay tribute to the richness of the current musical landscape.

Friday, January 15th
8p Chuck Bettis/Dafna Naphtali Duo
Nate Wooley Solo 9p
10p Zach Layton/Ryan Sawyer/Alex Waterman Trio

Saturday January 16th
8p Jeremiah Cymerman Solo
Sara Schoenbeck/Ursel Schlict Duo
10p Brandon Seabrook Solo

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Interview with Those Behind “For Braxton”

For Braxton was part of the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival. An interview with the musicians behind the event is available:

In addition, the concert will see the first performance of The Braxton Project by ELISION ensemble and John Butcher, an innovative assemblage of Braxton music and inspiration that connects his compositions, musical language and improvisation with new music created by the performers. Timothy O’Dwyer, ELISION saxophonist and curator of The Braxton Project explains more about the unique work:

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Sitting in a room with experimental music professor Alvin Lucier

An interview and profile of Lucier from the Wesleyan Argus:

Professor Alvin Lucier may be the most famous professor here that you’ve never heard of. Through his groundbreaking compositions, Lucier has become a world-renowned composer and is hailed as a genius in the experimental music genre.

However, Lucier’s path to experimental music was not a planned one. Though he grew up in a musical house dreaming of becoming a composer, he was not initially inspired by experimental music.

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Meredith Monk – Bending Melodies in ‘Songs of Ascension’

A review from NYTimes.com:

The wonder of Meredith Monk is that having created a musical language and theatrical style, she has been able to stretch and refine them with just about every work. Her recent music, including “Songs of Ascension,” a collaboration with the video artist Ann Hamilton, which opened at the BAM Harvey Theater on Wednesday, sounds nothing like the assertive pieces she wrote and sang in the 1980s. Yet enough musical DNA remains, in the form of idiosyncratic warbling and interlocking rhythms, that you would not mistake it for anyone else’s work.

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Marilyn Crispell Interview

NewMusicBox interviews Ms. Crispell.

When pianist Marilyn Crispell was already in her late twenties, jazz arrived like a spiritual revelation and pushed her through the ensuing decades as smoothly and swiftly as a line of falling dominoes. From Boston to Woodstock, from the Creative Music Studio to the Braxton Quartet and then beyond, Crispell has explored a rich catalog of music both alone and in the company of some of the field’s most talented artists. For a musical trajectory that began behind a piano at the Peabody Conservatory in 1960s Baltimore, it may not have been the most obvious career path, but it’s also not one Crispell seems to have had any doubts about following.

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