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    Phases The Music of Steve Reich

    Music Marathon Days

    SATURDAY 7 OCTOBER

    Session 1 11am LSO St Lukes In the Beginning page 6Session 2 2pm LSO St Lukes Distant Voices page 8Freestage 2.45pm Barbican Foyer Lila Cita (gamelan) page 11

    Session 3 4pm Barbican Theatre Diversions page 12Freestage 4.15pm Barbican Foyer Powerplant page 11Freestage 6.15pm Barbican Foyer Music for Airports page 15Session 4 7.30pm Barbican Hall Remixing Reich page 16

    SUNDAY 8 OCTOBER

    Session 5 11am LSO St Lukes Extensions page 18Session 6 2pm LSO St Lukes New York page 20

    Freestage 3.45pm Barbican Foyer Konono No.1 page 21Session 7 5pm Barbican Theatre Responses to Reich page 22Freestage 6.45pm Barbican Foyer Bang on a Can All-Stars page 25Session 8 8pm Barbican Hall Quintessential Reich page 26

    Foyer installation 3pm7pm Brian Eno: 77 Million Paintings page 15

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    Saturday 7 October Sunday 8 October, 2006

    Barbican Hall/Barbican Theatre/LSO St Lukes

    The Barbican Centre is provided by theCity of London Corporation as part of itscontribution to the cultural life of Londonand the nation.

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    2

    0845 120 7557 Box officeReduced booking fee online

    www.barbican.org.uk

    filmeducationmusic

    theatreartdance

    GreatPerformers20062007

    Traced Overhead The Musical World of Thomas AdsA festival celebrating the composer, pianist and conductor Thomas Ads.

    New Crowned Hope A Festival by Peter SellarsNew works by John Adams,Kaija SaariahoandOsvaldo Golijovplus the Mark Morris Dance Group.

    International OrchestrasFeaturing theBerliner Philharmoniker, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of AmsterdamandDresden Staatskapelle.

    World-class soloistsDavid Daniels, Rene Fleming,Angela Gheorghiu,Evgeny Kissin,Anna NetrebkoandRolando Villazn,Andreas SchollandMaxim Vengerovin concert.

    Opera and Vocal MusicHandels Theodora, Ariodante, Giulio CesareandAmadigi di Gaulaas well asperformances from Les Arts Florissants with William Christie and theMonteverdi Choir with Sir John Eliot Gardiner.

    www.barbican.org.uk/musicTickets on sale now

    Thomas Ads

    Peter Sellars

    Anna Netrebko & RolandoVillazn

    m

    usic

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    Celebrating at 70

    3

    WongeBergmann

    Celebrating at 70

    by Steve ReichBeyond conventional boundariesIn 1966, at the age of 30, I formed my first ensemble ofthree musicians. The possibility that in 40 years therewould be festivals of my music around the world tocelebrate my 70th year was unimaginable.

    My music has never submitted to conventionalboundaries. In 1973, after my ensemble played a concert

    in the Queen Elizabeth Hall, a young man with long hairand lipstick came up and said, Hello, Im Brian Eno.Three years later in Berlin, David Bowie showed up for theEuropean premiere of Music for 18 Musicians.

    In the 1990s I found myself remixed by a youngergeneration of DJs. For the young student who sat inclubs in the Fifties and Sixties listening to Miles Davis,

    Kenny Clark and JohnColtrane, you could say thiswas poetic justice. I wastaught by Hall Overton,Vincent Persichetti, DariusMilhaud and Luciano Berio.But I was as influenced byGhanian drumming, Balinesegamelan and Hebrew chantas I was by Bartk, Stravinsky,Protin and Bach.

    People assumed there was a mathematical basis for what

    I composed, since there were clearly musical processesworking themselves out in my music. But they were wrong.All these processes were founded on musical intuition: Ijudged the results by ear. Ive sometimes used samplersand computers, but have also felt the need to rid myself oftechnology and just write for musicians and singers. Andso it has continued and grown to this day.

    Steve Reich, 2006

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    Introduction

    4

    We have good reason to celebrate Steve Reichs 70thbirthday. Recently called ... the most original musical thinkerof our time (The New Yorker), Reich, in his lifetime, has seenand (to a large extent) caused a revolution to take place.

    Alienation, isolation, frustration was the beginning. In the1950s and 1960s, conventional Western musicalcomposition had become paralysed. Systems oncegroped for by Arnold Schoenberg and the SecondViennese School at the beginning of the 20th century hadbecome magnified and codified to the virtual exclusion of

    emotional message, let alone joy. Tonality, recognisableform and rhythm had become virtually taboo.Composers were writing for themselves and othercomposers. If audiences were baffled, it didnt matter. Ifaudiences stayed away, it didnt matter. Serialism with itsrigorous organising of pitch, rhythm, dynamic and formwas squeezing the life-blood out of serious music.

    European radio stations, American and Europeanacademic music departments jumped on the band-wagon. Art music no longer charmed and entertained;

    indeed, if it did, it was deemed frivolous. Complexity forits own sake was revered. Many young composers werestuck. Perhaps the principal challenge had to come fromAmerica The Land of the Free (and of jazz) but therewas something in the air in Europe too. It took guts to takeon the musical establishment and it took tremendoustalent.

    Reich, born in New York City, graduated in philosophyfrom Cornell, going on to study composition at Juilliardand Mills College, California, with Darius Milhaud and

    Luciano Berio. His fellow students in 1961 were writing

    enormously complicated scores which remained papermusic: they were never performed Mills had no orchestra.But John Coltrane was playing modal jazz at the JazzWorkshop. This was the most interesting music for me atthe time by day I was learning about what I did notwant to do, but by night I was learning about somethingthat I did want to work into my life. Reich resolved thatwhatever his limitations (he played piano and percussion)he must play in performances of his own music andcreate his own ensemble like jazz musicians have alwaysdone. (It is a not insignificant hallmark of those

    composers in the same revolution Philip Glass, LouisAndriessen and Michael Nyman that each set up theirown bands, Nyman and Glass at one time playing inReich's ensemble.)

    Paradoxically, Reich at first countered the rigidity ofserialism with an alternative approach, no less rigid. Musicas a Gradual Processspelt it out: I do not mean theprocess of composition but rather pieces of music that are,literally, processes. Soon minimalism was coined as aterm for the music of Steve Reich (and others), but its sense

    is vague and in no way accurately describes the music.But there are some overall principles repetition as astructural means, non-functional harmony (tonal orotherwise), slow, almost static harmonic change and abeat. The influence of non-Western music, in particularAfrican drumming and the Balinese gamelan is clear butBartk, Stravinsky and Kurt Weill lurk in the bushes. Overthe course of this festival, it will become evident that Reichhas never remained static; indeed his progress from rigidity(to break the mould?) to a wider embracing of colour,

    texture and form is remarkable for its inexorable logic.

    Phases The Music of Steve Reich

    by Annette Morreau

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    Introduction

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    Reich has influenced a couple of generations ofcomposers and appealed to audiences in vast numbers.Even as far back as 1974, a performance of his seminalwork Drummingat Londons Hayward Gallery sold outin ten days. Some indication of Reichs immensepopularity today is the fact that on his actual 70thbirthday 3 October no fewer than 26 separateperformances take place around the world.

    Phases The Music of Steve Reichis a feast of a festival,an extraordinary collaboration of artists and organisations.

    Almost all the key works are to be found and almost allthe key players. The celebration of dance through thechoreographers Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, RichardAlston and Akram Khan presenting a world premiere,Proverb, and a London premiere, Variations for Vibes,Pianos and Strings flags up the dance world's earlysupport for, and fascination with, Reich's pulsatingscores, while Reich on Film underlines the importance ofthe visual arts where artists and galleries for so longprovided a natural habitat. The Cave, so rarelyperformed, so technically awesome, so profoundly

    disturbing, is a summation of many directions and atriumph of collaboration with the video artist, Beryl Korot,Reichs wife.

    The central core of the festival aptly called MusicMarathon Days is on 7 and 8 October where oneach day four sessions take place. In the Beginning[Session 1] includes 1960s process pieces Its GonnaRainandCome Out which use identical tape-loops soproducing a kaleidoscopic sound effect of enormousenergy as they drift in and out of phase with each other.

    Phasing, as this technique became known, was one of

    Reichs earliest trademarks, and Drumming[Session 4Remixing Reich] shifting machine-phasing to live humanperformers on drums, glockenspiels and marimbas isarguably still his greatest work. Reich uses speech andwordless vocal sound for meaning, colour and rhythm. Hisvocal and mixed media works embrace the political andthe biblical Reichs life has been centred on Jewishthought over many years but remain, to an extent,impersonal and objective, paradoxically delivering thegreater emotional punch. Different Trains[Session 2],The Cave, and Daniel Variations, which receives its world

    premiere [Session 8], more overtly confront the Jewishdilemma, while TehillimandYou Are (Variations)[bothSession 3] are philosophically more abstract.

    Another Reichian trait is multi-tracking and sampledmusic, where performers play simultaneously with andagainst pre-recorded versions of themselves: DifferentTrains[Session 2], New York Counterpoint[Session 6],Electric Counterpoint[Session 7], and Cello Counterpoint[Session 8] are astonishing, vibrant feats of technology.

    The galaxy of stars performing the Steve ReichEnsemble ( his own ensemble still with players from the1960s), Synergy Vocals, Kronos Quartet, Theatre ofVoices, Bang on a Can All-Stars, Icebreaker, UK trip hopDJ/producers Coldcut, BBC Symphony Orchestra, BrittenSinfonia, soloists Maya Beiser, Glenn Branca and USelectronica pioneer DJ Spooky (to name but a few) promises much. Its rare to witness a revolution in 11 days.And its even rarer to be a part of it!

    Annette Morreau 2006Annette Morreau was the founder/director of the Contemporary Music Network, devised

    the television films NOT MOZART, is the author of Emanuel Feuermannand contributes toThe Independent.

    JeffHerman

    Steve Reich

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    Its Gonna Rainis Reichs opus 1. The piece beginsexactly as the process of its composition began, with arecording the composer made in San Francisco late in1964 of a black Pentecostal preacher, Brother Walter, outin the street. Back in the studio Reich discovered, almostby accident, that two tape recorders, playing the sameloop of tape, would run at slightly different speeds, sothat the sound loops would gradually move out of phasewith each other and back again. This is the effectreproduced in the first part of the piece, where it seems attimes that other words are being spoken. Also present

    from the original tape is the sound of a pigeon taking off,like a drum beat, and the rumble of city traffic. Thesecond part of the work takes another sentence ofBrother Walters, and this time the phasing process isopen-ended, reducing the words and the voice to noise.In both parts the musical processes depend on relativelynew technology, but the essential principle of identicallines being separated in time is that of a long-established form: the canon or round. As Reich hasrecalled, the piece came about shortly after the Cuban

    Missile Crisis, when words about coming rainfall had aparticular resonance. In the second part, he hassuggested: The emotional feeling is that youre goingthrough the cataclysm; youre experiencing what its liketo have everything dissolve.

    Having developed phasing in his tape pieces of 19656,Reich wondered if the same principle of slowly slippingone musical line past another could be applied in liveperformance. His first success came with Piano Phase

    (1967), reinterpreted here by David Cossin as Video

    Phase. In the original piece, one pianist plays a figureover and over while, rather as in the first part of ItsGonna Rain, a second moves gradually ahead. Thishappens three times, with ever shorter figures. Each timethe two players start together and end together, aftermoving through a cycle of misalignments dappled withnew patterns resulting from the different combinations. InCossins version, he plays MIDI-percussion pads thattrigger the piano figures, and does so in dialogue with hisown video-recording. This is a spectacular 21st-centuryremake of the composition, but at the same time it recalls

    the pieces studio origins, when Reich began exploringpossibilities by playing against a tape loop he hadrecorded.

    Reich composed his second tape piece, Come Out, in1966, soon after he had returned to New York. Hecreated it for a benefit concert, in aid of six boys who hadbeen charged with murder after the Harlem riots of 1964;hence the choice of source material from testimony given

    by one of the boys, Daniel Hamm, describing theaftermath of a beating he had suffered at police hands.He had to open a bruise, because only those with visiblebleeding were taken to hospital. Essentially a refinementof Its Gonna Rain, as Reich has described it, the worksphase process produces an effect of slowly increasingreverberation which gradually passes into a canon orround for two voices, then four and finally eight.

    Soon after Piano PhaseReich turned to giving ensemble

    performances with electronic means, including a device

    Saturday 7 October Session 1 11am LSO St Lukes

    6

    Session 1: In the BeginningSteve Reich (b. 1936) Its Gonna Rain (1965) 17 solo tape

    Steve Reich Video Phase (1967/2002) UK premiere 15 David Cossin

    Steve Reich Come Out (1966) 13 solo tape

    Steve Reich Four Organs (1970) c. 16-22 Icebreaker

    Michael Gordon (b. 1956) Yo Shakespeare (1992) 11 Icebreaker

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    Session 1 11am LSO St Lukes Saturday 7 October

    7

    he constructed himself to measure out pulses and changethe phase relationships between electronic or performedsounds.Four Organs, completed in January 1970,came as a reaction to the unyielding accuracy ofelectronic time. The music still depends on regular pulses,but these are now delivered by a player shaking maracasat the same rate throughout, and so maintaining anaudible clock for the other four musicians. They keep tothe same chord (a dominant 11th of A major), at first inirregular jabs, but then with notes progressively pickedout and sustained for longer and longer periods. It is as if

    a line of colour were gradually bleeding across a wholesurface, or as if the chord, rhythmically alive to beginwith, were congealing. Reichs choice of notes to be heldresults in an extremely slow resolution, followed by arestoration of harmonic tension though now in theultimately non-tense form of continuous sound.

    Four Organswas played, as other Reich pieces hadbeen, in museums and galleries in New York and otherU.S. cities, but the work soon brought him much wideraudiences. In 1971 he and his ensemble took it on their

    first European tour, and Michael Tilson Thomas invitedhim to play it with members of the Boston SymphonyOrchestra. Born in the electronic studio just a few yearsbefore, Reichs music was ready to come out.

    Michael Gordon, 20 years younger than Reich, countsYo Shakespeareas his breakthrough piece. By hisown account, it came about again by means of a newtechnology, the possibility of composing on a computer

    not creating new sounds but typing in notation, and

    being free to ignore the rhythmic conventions natural to acomposer writing on paper. Gordon found himselfcomposing unusual rhythms, especially combinations inwhich one instrumental line is out of synchrony withanother by a third of a beat. He was not sure such thingswould be performable, but found in this mornings groupmusicians who were up to it.

    Marked Aggressive and joyful, the piece proceeds at auniform tempo, with jumps from one texture to anotherand constant rhythmic irregularities in how the

    instruments have to work together. The effect, thecomposer has said, is almost as if there are threedifferent dance rooms with three different dance bandsplaying at the same time as if theyre playing differentsongs and different tempos, but somehow you coulddance to it or somehow you could feel that there was acommon rhythm.

    It was Reich who advised Gordon to preface his scorewith a note on the musics rhythmic oddity: If people lookat this score, theyre going to think youre an idiot. But if

    you actually tell them on the front page that you knowyoure an idiot, then theyll take you seriously. Gordonduly dedicated the piece to the senior composer.

    For details of composers/performers please see pages 2835, Session 1

    There is no interval in this performance.

    Steve Reich, New York, 1969BettyFreeman/Nonesuch

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    The medieval pieces that start this programme were, PaulHillier has explained, chosen to illustrate various aspectsof Steve Reichs musical style. Here are the composersancestors.

    Gloria ad modem tubae(Gloria in trumpet mode), ashort piece by the greatest master of his time, has two pairsof canonic voices, of which the lower pair was originallyinstrumental but is set for singers in this performance.

    The four hockets that follow exemplify a kind of joltingcounterpoint where each of two lines keeps stopping and

    the other fills in the gap. These four, from the seeminglyinstrumental collection known as the Bamberg Codex,are here sung to the four syllables of alleluia, onesyllable to each hocket in turn. The two hocketing uppervoices are freely constructed over a third line, which is thesame in each hocket but given a different rhythmicpattern, and the effect is heightened by how the vowelcolour only changes at the end of each hocket.

    Canons and hockets are everywhere in Reichs music; notso unaccompanied melody, such as Protin offers in

    Beata viscera. The text is by Philip the Chancellor, animportant figure in the Parisian intellectual world ofaround eight centuries ago, when Protin was composingmusic for the new cathedral of Notre Dame. The inclusionof this piece needs no justification, but Hillier points outthat it provides a musical contrast such as Reich ofteninserts into his pieces. It always seems he cant wait to getback to the canons and hockets, but, even so, he writesdelicious moments of slow music in the process.

    TheBenedicamus Domino, sung at the end of mass,

    was often made a moment of musical display in the 13th

    and 14th centuries. This keyboard version, with elaboratefiguration, comes from the Faenza Codex.

    Finally, Protins Viderunt omnesis one of the gloriesof its epoch and a piece astonishingly suggestive of Reichin how the four voices interlock in great cycles ofrepetition and change, how lines can be both individualand responsive to harmonic gear changes, how just afew words can sustain an immense composition, or howhuman speed and eternal slowness can happen at once.The entire piece is based on a Christmas chant, which, in

    extreme deceleration, supports a glorious stretch ofcounterpoint on each of its notes, the other voicespointing the move from one note to the next and joiningin magnificent cadences that end sections. Just twice thechant is heard alone, a steady foundation without itssuperstructure.

    There are direct links to Reichs Proverb, for this piecewas proposed and first conducted by Paul Hillier, andReich has stated that he found guidance and inspiration

    in the works of Protin. The result is a graceful homage, aslow salute across so many centuries.

    Like Protin, Reich needs only a seed of text, and hefound something perfect for his purpose in the writings ofWittgenstein: How small a thought it takes to fill a wholelife. These words are set to a beautiful falling phrase,which the three sopranos extend in ever slower canons,stopping to brace and listen to livelier duets from thetenors. Electric keyboards enter to accompany the voices;vibraphones come later to bring forward the shifting

    groups of two and three beats, such as Reich often uses to

    Saturday 7 October Session 2 2pm LSO St Lukes

    8

    Session 2: Distant VoicesTexts and translations are available separately at this session.

    Guillaume Dufay(13971474) Gloria ad modem tubae 4 anon. Four hockets (Alleluia) (13th-century) 4

    Protin (fl. c.1200) Beata viscera 6 anon. (Notre Dame school) Benedicamus Domino 2 Protin Viderunt omnes 12Theatre of Voices, directorPaul Hillier Athelas Sinfonietta Copenhagen

    Steve Reich (b. 1936) Proverb (1995) 14 Theatre of Voices, directorPaul Hillier

    Steve Reich Different Trains (1988) 27 Kronos QuartetDavid Harrington violin John Sherba violin Hank Dutt viola Jeffrey Zeigler cello1. America Before the War 2. Europe During the War 3. After the War

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    Session 2 2pm LSO St Lukes Saturday 7 October

    contribute rhythmic liveliness. After almost five minutes,magically, the sopranos turn their phrase upside-down,so that now it rises, and the harmony turns from B minorto E flat minor. The last part, the composer notes, is onelarge augmentation canon for the sopranos returning tothe original key of B minor with the tenors singing theirmelismatic duets continuously as the canon slowlyunfolds around them. This is concluded by a short codawhich ends, as the piece began, with a single soprano.

    Reich tells us also that the paragraph in which he foundhis Wittgenstein proverb includes another: If you want togo down deep you do not need to travel far.

    Contrastingly a work of travel, Different Trainswascomposed in 1988 for the Kronos Quartet. The playersinteract with recorded sounds: themselves and, mostcrucially, fragments of speech, together with train noises.Thus the piece presents, Reich has said, both adocumentary and a musical reality, and as such itprovided preparation for The Cave. About this most

    autobiographical of his pieces yet typically objective he has further commented:

    Different Trainshas its roots in my early tape piecesIts Gonna RainandCome Out. The basic idea is thatcarefully chosen speech recordings generate the musicalmaterials for musical instruments.

    The idea for the piece came from my childhood. When Iwas one year old my parents separated. My mothermoved to Los Angeles and my father stayed in New York.

    Since they arranged divided custody, I travelled back and

    forth by train frequently between New York and LosAngeles from 1939 to 1942 accompanied by mygoverness. While the trips were exciting and romantic atthe time I now look back and think that, if I had been inEurope during this period, as a Jew I would have had toride very different trains. With this in mind I wanted tomake a piece that would accurately reflect the wholesituation.

    To prepare the tape I recorded my governess Virginia,then in her seventies, reminiscing about our train tripstogether, and also a retired Pullman porter, LawrenceDavis, then in his eighties. I also collected recordings ofHolocaust survivors Rachella, Paul and Rachel, all aboutmy age and then living in America, and of American andEuropean train sounds of the Thirties and Forties.

    In order to combine the taped speech with the stringinstruments I selected small speech samples that aremore or less clearly pitched and then notated them asaccurately as possible in musical notation. The stringsthen literally imitate that speech melody.

    The speech samples as well as the train sounds weretransferred to tape with the use of sampling keyboardsand a computer. Three separate string quartets are alsoadded to the pre-recorded tape and the final live quartetpart is added in performance.

    Different Trainswas commissioned by Betty Freeman for the Kronos Quartet.

    For details of composers/performers please see pages 2835, Session 2

    There is no interval in this performance.

    9

    Paul Hillier Kronos Quartet

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    10

    70th Birthday Tributes

    70th Birthday Tributes to Steve Reich (1)

    The French music critic and broadcaster Daniel Caux used tosay that there have been three major new developments in

    music since the Second World War: the music of John Cage,

    American minimalism, and English experimental music. I have

    been lucky enough to have been involved with all three.

    Steve Reich and I first met over 35 years ago at the time of his

    first performances in England. There was a sense of community

    between him (and other American composers outside the

    avant-garde mainstream) and English composers of

    experimental music. As it happened, both Steve and I had

    studied philosophy and we were all closer to the world of thefine arts than to establishment music. We exchanged tapes of

    our respective recent pieces and in 1972, along with Michael

    Nyman, Cornelius Cardew and Michael Parsons, I toured with

    those incredible virtuosi that make up Steve Reich and

    Musicians, performing Drumming.

    I am proud to have been one of those musicians for a brief

    period of time, and to have maintained friendship with him, and

    with them. I am also happy to have had the chance to write a

    new piece, dedicated to him, for his 70th birthday.

    Gavin Bryars

    Kronos Quartet has been fortunate to play four pieces by Steve

    Reich over the years. The first was Clapping Music, and our

    hands swelled up from all the clapping: not a great way to

    begin a concert. Then Steve wrote Different Trainsfor us, and

    this work Steves most personal masterpiece, in my opinion

    changed our concerts and quartet music for ever. Later, I asked

    Steve to write another piece for the 25th anniversary of Kronos,

    and eventually we had Triple Quartet. How many pieces are

    there that can start a concert, end a concert, or go anywhere

    else on the programme? More recently, weve added PendulumMusicto our work. And Steve will write a new piece for Kronos

    soon. His music always sounds fresh, vital, and young. What a

    huge accomplishment. Happy Birthday, Steve!

    David Harrington, Kronos Quartet

    Steve Reich is one of the few modern composers who havecontributed to the language of music so as to change it in a

    decisive way for everyone. Even those who arent directly

    influenced by him have to come to terms at some level with what

    hes done.

    His music reminds me of Bach: jouissance is the word that

    comes to mind, the head thrown back in pleasure, the harmonies

    grinding away, the mesh of brain and impulse as the music takes

    sheer pleasure in its own existence. On the one hand theres the

    irresistible pulsation of life itself, and on the other the details: the

    gritty harmonies and the interlacing of voices and instruments ina constant flux of imitation and variation.

    Paul Hillier

    It is impossible to imagine our world without Steve Reichs music.

    When the three of us met, first as friends and then more

    formally as Bang on a Can, Steves music was the music we

    played for each other, that we discussed, that we meditated on.

    Steves music was the music that had changed our world.

    Nobody knew this at the time, of course. Certainly we didnt. We

    were about eight years old when those pieces were written and

    it would still be a decade or so until we heard them. And by thetime we heard them Steve had moved on, and was becoming

    an underground sensation.

    Today, here we are in the Barbican so something must have

    changed. Steves music has filtered into the consciousness of our

    society, and both it and its ideas can now be heard everywhere,

    implanted into the subconscious of several generations of

    creative musicians and listeners. Even the most casual look at

    the music world shows the wide breadth of his influence:

    classical, electronica, new age, rock-cinematic Steves

    influence is everywhere. People have figured out how to listen.

    In the history of music this kind of originality and this kind of

    impact show up only rarely. It is a tribute both to Steve and to the

    world we live in that these strikingly original ideas are now very

    present, all around us, and celebrated in their own time.

    Michael Gordon, David Lang, Julia Wolfe

    Bang on a Can

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    11

    Freestage Lila Cita/Powerplant Saturday 7 October

    Saturday 7 October 2.45pm Barbican FoyerFreestage

    Lila Cita gamelan groupAndy Channing artistic director Maya Beiser cello

    Programme includes Kebyar Maya (1995) arr. Evan Ziporyn

    The UKs leading Balinese gamelan performing group, Lila

    Cita, founded by Andy Channing in 1992, has playedextensively throughout the UK and abroad including, recently,

    a tour of Bali. Today the musicians play the Balinese angklung,

    a small ceremonial gamelan, in a mixture of modern and

    traditional pieces as well as kecak(voice gamelan).

    Kebyar Mayafor 16 multi-tracked cellos was written in

    response to Maya Beisers request for Balinese cello music,

    writes Evan Ziporyn. I took an early 20th-century Balinese

    piece, Kebyar Ding, and the challenge of finding the cello

    equivalent to gongs, bamboo flutes and interlocking

    percussion instruments led us into unexpected terrain. Kebyar

    refers to sudden, natural events: the bursting open of a flower,

    a flash of lightning. Maya is the veil of illusion, the leap of the

    human mind that allows us to imagine 16 cellists with identical

    sounds, playing Balinese rhythms in perfect synchrony.

    Saturday 7 October 4.15pm Barbican Foyer Freestage

    PowerplantUK percussionist Joby Burgess and hisadventurous ensemble explore a range of

    seminal electronic repertoire. Programme

    includes Steve ReichElectric Counterpoint

    Matthew Fairclough Audiotectonics III

    Kraftwerk and Burgess/Foster Radioactivity

    andPocket Calculator.

    Joby Burgess percussion Matthew Faircloughsound Elysian Quartet Emma Smith, Jennymay

    Logan violin Vincent Sipprell viola Laura Moody cello

    Way back in 1968, at the height of a time when the riots ofDetroit, Paris, L.A., Washington D.C., Prague and even Memphis

    were in full force, a young composer named Steve Reich wrote

    a seminal essay entitled simply Music as a Gradual Process

    where he observed what turned out to be a great vision of the

    future of music: though I may have the pleasure of discovering

    musical processes and composing the material to run through

    them, once the process is set up and loaded, it runs by itself. For

    me, Reichs music of phase transitions, and densely layered

    collages and sequences reflects so much of what has come to

    be called electronic music and digital media in a world where

    almost all aspects of the economy are driven by digital

    networks. The way that computers are driven by algorithms and

    that information is compressed by mathematical analysis is

    paralleled in Reichs work but without the computers!

    When one hears pieces like New York Counterpoint, Come

    Out, TehillimandDrummingone can think of the many

    compositional strategies that have come out of the collision of

    Europe, America and the varied and sundry traditions of the

    rest of the globe. Reichs music points to a place of synthesis a

    location that posits music as a network of processes. I guess onecould look at Reichs work as the embodiment of what Emerson

    liked to call the strange equilibrium between quotation and

    originality in the American mind. My remix of City Lifeis a

    reflection of what I see as the beauty of a composition inspired

    by the dense urban landscape of the global metropolis it

    traces the evolution of Reichs music from tape collage to

    amplified digital media to string ensemble, and back again.

    Looking back to when I first did the remix of City Life, one of the

    things that struck me when I heard Reichs work was the sense that

    humanity and rhythm are inseparable. Music is a mirror you holdup to society it reflects back almost everything you want to see,

    and a lot that you dont: its a hungry child that consumes all

    emotion fear, joy, anger, pleasure you name it and

    transforms it into something to share with your fellow human

    being. In the middle of the conflicts and strife bestriding the world

    these days, Reichs music shines as a beacon of hope where

    multiple traditions can co-exist. I hope my remix evokes that same

    sense of idealism in the listener.

    Paul D. Miller aka DJ Spooky

    70th Birthday Tributes to Steve Reich (2)

    Powerplant

    70th Birthday Tributes Saturday 7 October

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    Written in the year of Reichs birth, Bartks Music forStrings, Percussion and Celestacould have beenthe infant composers horoscope, foretelling a life of folkand art traditions vigorously integrated, of musicalprocesses and of percussion instruments made central.The work is an abstract drama in which two identicalstring orchestras, to right and left, are played off againsteach other and against a central percussion group led bya piano.

    There are four movements, of which the first is anelaborate symmetrical canon: the subject, played by theviolas of both orchestras and in a tight chromatic mode,starts out from A, and on each return it moves stepwisealternately up and down in fifths. The pattern iscompleted at E flat (marked by a climax) and then morecursorily played backwards. At the end, two joined violinlines put the movement in a nutshell. What follows is abrilliant and furious scherzo on a variation of the sametheme, often using the string and percussion ensembles indialogue; here the ending comes with imitations andreflections between the string groups.

    The nocturnal third movement is again symmetrical, infive main sections marked off by quotations from the firstmovements initial melody, which once more seems to bethe germ from which a whole movement grows. So it istoo in the finale, a dance medley which continues thequestion-answer games of the earlier Allegro, but whichat once emerges into a brighter harmonic light: at theculmination, which comes with a broadening of tempo,the main theme is transfigured in C major albeitBartks C major, a scale with raised fourth and flattened

    seventh which he learnt from Romanian folk musicians. At

    this moment, with Hungary present too in the ascendingfourths of the melody and Bulgaria in the complex metre,the work realises a vision of community just as such valueswere being betrayed in Nazi Germany.

    You Are (Variations)belongs to the cascade of worksthat have come out of the next piece, Tehillim works inwhich short sacred texts or proverbs are sung across livelymusical designs. In this case there are four movementsand four texts:

    1. You are wherever your thoughts are(Rabbi Nachmanof Breslov, a Hasidic mystic of Beethovens time)

    2. Shiviti Hashem lnegdi(I place the Eternal before me,from Psalm 16)

    3. Explanations come to an end somewhere(LudwigWittgenstein)

    4. Ehmor maht, vahsay harbay(Say little and do much,from Rabbi Shammais contribution to the Talmud)

    Short, these phrases form suitable material for a set ofvariations or, rather, for four different but linkedvariation sets. Typically, all are varied variations. As Reichhas noted: As I went on, the harmonies departed fartherfrom the original ground plan. I frankly enjoyed thisimmensely, since I was following spontaneous musicalintuition.

    The first movement, which accounts for very nearly halfthe length, stretches the syllables out. From this, thesecond emerges as a break into brightness and speed,

    but the voices rapidly decelerate to join in a kind of slow-

    Saturday 7 October Session 3 4pm Barbican Theatre

    12

    Session 3: DiversionsBla Bartk(18811945) Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta (1936) 271. Andante tranquillo 2. Allegro 3. Adagio 4. Allegro moltoBBC Symphony Orchestra Alexander Rumpf conductor

    Steve Reich (b. 1936) You Are (Variations) (2004) 24BBC Symphony Orchestra Synergy Vocals, directorMicaela Haslam Stefan Asburyconductor

    Steve Reich Tehillim (1981) 30BBC Symphony Orchestra Synergy Vocals Stefan Asburyconductor

    Text and translation ofTehillim, along with a list of BBC Symphony Orchestra players, are available separately at this session.

    _ _ _ g

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    Session 3 4pm Barbican Theatre Saturday 7 October

    motion canon with marimbas, vibes and pianos driving iton in constantly changing metres. There is a breakbefore the slow third movement, from which, as before,the next movement jumps out. What unites the pieceharmonically, Reich has said, is a constantly recurring Dmajor dominant chord usually with G, rather than A, inthe bass. This bright ray of D major light illuminates mostof the piece, most intensely in the final movement.

    In the 1970s Reich found his music resonating with

    traditions from West Africa and Indonesia. Then hestarted to wonder what he might learn from a culture towhich, as a Jewish musician, he was more directly heir. Tofind out, he made himself a student all over again ofHebrew, the Torah and cantillation (the traditional Jewishways of chanting sacred texts) and set out on anotherjourney, to Israel. Once again he learnt a lot. Once againhis creativity was recharged. And once again he gainedconfirmation from the fact that contemporary andtraditional cultures, western and non-western, wereleading him to the same conclusions. Tehillim(1981), hisfirst explicitly Jewish piece, is his symphony of psalms.

    The title is the Hebrew word for psalms (itself a Greekterm), and a few verses from the Biblical Book of Psalmsprovide the text for the entire 30-minute composition.Reich notes in the score that his tuned tambourineswithout jingles may approximate the sound of the tofmentioned in the first verse he chooses from Psalm 150,and that his other small percussion instruments maracas, crotales and hands (clapped) are similar to

    those that had a place throughout the Middle East in

    Biblical times. So the essential sound of Tehillim ofvoices with percussion is archaeological.

    Not so the music. Reich remarks also that one of hisreasons for choosing psalm texts was the fact that theancient tradition of psalm singing has been lost (exceptamong Yemenite Jews). He was therefore free to inventhis own melodies, and he made them in his own way, sothat they keep up an ebullient mobility, reboundingbetween different modes and metres. They do so partlybecause of their self-similar structure, in which smallgroups of notes keep reappearing transposed orotherwise changed. The voices dance on, all the timesinging the same things in different orders andperspectives, and gaining more rhythmic liveliness fromjostling against the percussion.

    The work is in four parts, each defined by its text andassociated melody. Techniques of canon for two voices,then for four are introduced in the first part. Thenwithout a break, but with the arrival of a new melody, thesecond section offers the new sound of voices in two-partand three-part harmony. After that there is a pausebefore the third and fourth sections begin interminglingcanonic and harmonic conceptions. All the time thetextural complexity broadly increases, though nearlyalways keeping at the centre the ancient combination ofvoices and percussion.

    For details of composers/performers please see pages 2835, Session 3

    (For a list of the musicians in the BBC Symphony Orchestra please seeaccompanying freesheet, available with the text ofTehillimat this session.)

    There is no interval in this performance.

    13

    Bla Bartk Steve ReichBettyFreeman/Nonesuch

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    14

    DJ Spooky adhere - going

    direct to

    printer

    Riddim Come Forward

    DJ Spookys reputation has now been firmlyestablished worldwide as a leading DJ, writer

    and musician.

    As a kid, Spooky would spend every summer in

    Jamaica visiting family and friends. His DJ roots

    were transformed by the authentic sounds of the

    island booming out of the Trojan-sized sound

    systems. It was only natural then for Spooky to

    create an album fromTrojans vaults that combines

    the old and the new and offer a 21st century

    soundsystem with one of his now legendary mixes.

    Album out 23rd October

    Pre-order at www.trojanrecords.com

    TJDDD334

    TICKETS: BARBICAN HALL 24 20 16 12 8 ST GILES CRIPPLEGATE/LSO ST LUKES 10

    Visit bbc.co.uk/symphonyorchestra for full details and or call020 7638 8891 for a free brochure.Weekend and Day Passes available.

    7.00PM BARBICAN HALL

    Triptych Nadeyka (world premiereof complete triptych)

    BBC Symphony Orchestra, KremerataBaltica, Martyn Brabbins conductorSharon Bezaly flute, Gidon Kremer violin

    9.30PM ST GILES CRIPPLEGATE

    Schtz Seven Last Words;Gubaidulina Canticle of the Sun

    BBC Singers, Fretwork, Stephen Cleoburyconductor,Alexander Ivashkin celloRichard Benjafield percussion,Chris Brannickpercussion,Iain Farrington organ

    Friday 12 January Saturday 13 January Sunday 14 January

    1.00PM ST GILES CRIPPLEGATE

    Gubaidulina String Quartets 1 & 2;Haydn StringQuartet inG,Op77 No1

    Royal String Quartet

    8.00PM BARBICAN HALL

    Gubaidulina Fairytale Poem, Offertorium,Pro et Contra, Bach Chaconne fromPartita in D minor

    London Symphony Orchestra,Valery Gergiev conductorLeonidas Kavakos violin

    2.00PM ST GILES CRIPPLEGATE

    Gubaidulina String Quartets 3 and 4,Haydn String Quartet in G minor, Op 74No 3,The Rider

    Royal String Quartet

    5.00PM LSO ST LUKES JERWOOD HALL

    Gubaidulina Hour of the Soul; Introitus

    Guildhall Symphony Orchestra and WindEnsemble, Mikhael Agrest conductor,Nicolas Hodges piano

    8.00PM BARBICAN HALL

    Gubaidulina The Light of the End, Underthe Sign of Scorpio (UK premiere);Alleluja

    BBC Symphony Orchestra,Valery Gergievconductor, Friedrich Lips bayan,BBC Singers, BBC Symphony Chorus

    THE MUSIC OF SOFIA GUBAIDULINA FRIDAY 12 SUNDAY 14 JANUARY 2007

    020 7638 8891 Box Office

    A unique chance toexplore the mystical,

    contemplative musicalworld of Russiancomposer SofiaGubaidulina in a

    weekend of concerts,talks and films.

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    15

    77 Million Paintingsis the next evolutionary stage of BrianEno's exploration into light as an artists medium and theaesthetic possibilities of generative engines. With the arrivalof high-definition monitors and the increased processingpower of computers, whole new possibilities are opened upto an artist. 77 Million Paintingshas been installed on theBarbicans new plasma screens which utilise the computersunique capacity as a generating processor to produceoriginal visual compounds out of a large quantity of hand-painted elements.

    The audio, played on the foyer PA system, is processed ina similar way, combining layers of sound, ensuring younever hear exactly the same thing twice, even if running24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. The title 77 MillionPaintingsreflects the possible permutations of the piece.

    Freestage/Barbican Foyer Brian Eno Saturday 7 October

    Saturday 7 October 6.15pm Barbican Foyer Freestage

    Brian Eno Music for Airports (1978)Bang on a Can All-Stars

    When we first heardMusic for Airportsin thelate 1970s/early1980s itwas like a door crackingopen. This record-longpiece was a redefinitionof how we relate to musicin our everyday lives.

    Brian Eno was exploringthe question of wheremusic could go. Could its

    home lie somewhere outside the muzak of elevators anddentists offices and outside the concert hall as well?Could it exist somewhere in between? Eno was essentiallydefining ambient music. 28 years ago there were noambient departments in record stores. There were nonew age or techno sections, no chill rooms. Music forAirportskicked off a whole web of musics that hadn'texisted previously. But the unique factor about Enos workwas that, although it could and can exist in thebackground of everyday life, it is music that carries apotency and integrity that goes far beyond the incidental.

    It is music that is carefully, beautifully, brilliantlyconstructed and its compositional techniques rival themost intricate of symphonies.

    What Eno didnt imagine was that his piece would berealised with live musicians. In his analogue studio,methodically stringing out bits of tape and looping themover themselves, he hadnt anticipated that a newgeneration of musicians would take his music out of the

    studio and perform it on live instruments in a publicforum. At Bang on a Can, we have always searched forthe redefinition of music, exploring the boundariesbeyond what is expected. This project represents afurther step in this exploration. After 28 years, wheredoes this landmark piece fit into our ever-expandingdefinition? The effect has only begun. The Music forAirportsrevolution is just starting to unfold. The liverealisation of Music for Airportsstays close to the source.

    Michael Gordon, David Lang, Julia Wolfe 2006

    For information on performers see pages 2835, Session 5,

    and on Brian Eno pages 3031, Freestage 7 Oct.

    Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 October 3pm7pm Barbican Foyer

    Brian Eno 77 Million Paintings UK premiere

    Brian Eno

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    Conceived at a time when so many old barriers had

    recently fallen, Drummingrejoices in a world wheremodern and ancient, western and non-western are nolonger separate. Before writing it Reich had gone toGhana to study traditional drumming, and had not onlylearnt much but received an important confirmation. Thevisit showed him that the rhythmic processes with whichhe had been working in California and New York werealive also in the towns and villages of west Africa. Hecame back refreshed and enthused.

    He had other reasons to feel that way. The late Sixties hadopened doors for him personally, as much as for musicand for society. Concerts he had given in galleries in theSoHo district of New York, within a highly influentialavant-garde milieu, had quickly brought him aninternational reputation. He was ready to make a bigstatement. Drummingwas it: an immense sound machinewhich, while holding its ensemble of percussionists andvocalists in a firm grip, also gives them the means to exultin the immediacy of performance for one thing thatcame out of SoHo as well as Africa was a renewed sense

    of communality in music-making. Performers andlisteners are as one, exploring notions of sound and timethat belong to neither party but are joint property. Andthe composer is more a proposer, setting the limits withinwhich this exploration can take place.

    Drummingis divided into four parts, lasting altogetheraround an hour, the precise duration depending on howmany times the performers choose to repeat theirpatterns. The first part is for tuned bongos, the second forthree marimbas played by nine players together with two

    womens voices, the third for three glockenspiels played

    by four players together with whistling and piccolo, and

    the fourth for all these resources combined.

    The idea of adding vocal sounds to percussion occurredto the composer spontaneously as he put the scoretogether, working at drums in his studio, though it alsoprovided yet another link with popular music (thebacking group) and musical practices in non-westerncultures, besides adding colour and excitement.

    Throughout the piece the basic processes are those ofphasing. The voices, singing wordlessly or whistling, and

    the piccolo bring out patterns resulting from the interplayof like percussion instruments, the female singersaccompanying the marimbas while the higherglockenspiels require whistlers and piccolo. Sections arejoined by having new instruments follow the steps ofthose already playing, without change of tonality. AsReich has observed: Drummingshows that it is possibleto keep going in the same key for quite a while if thereare instead considerable rhythmic developmentstogether with occasional, but complete, changes oftimbre to supply variety. To quote him further:Drummingbegins with two drummers building up thebasic rhythmic pattern of the entire piece from a singledrum beat, played in a cycle of twelve beats with rests onall the other beats ... There is only one basic rhythmicpattern for all of Drumming. This pattern undergoeschanges of phase position, pitch and timbre, but all theperformers play this pattern, or some part of it,throughout the entire piece.

    INTERVAL

    Saturday 7 October Session 4 7.30pm Barbican Hall

    16

    Session 4: Remixing ReichSteve Reich (b.1936) Drumming (1971) c.6070 Steve Reich and Musicians Synergy Vocals

    Interval

    Steve Reich, remixed by DJ Spooky and Kronos Quartet City Life: Check it out (1995) c.1518DJ Spooky Kronos QuartetDavid Harrington violin John Sherba violin Hank Dutt viola Jeffrey Zeigler cello

    Steve Reich, remixed by Coldcut Music for 18 Musicians (1976) c.30

    Konono No.1 Congotronics (album released 2005) c.30

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    Session 4 7.30pm Barbican Hall Saturday 7 October

    DJ Spooky That Subliminal Kid likes to mix things,

    beginning with his personas, which include that of thewriter and artist Paul D. Miller; his D.J. alias he found inthe work of William Burroughs. Born in Washington D.C.,in 1970, he sees the remix as a modern form, responsiveto how recent technology has enabled us to cross-cutrapidly between different sources of information, but alsoas a continuation of well-established African andAfrican-American practices of reusing the products offoreign cultures to produce something new and vividlyexpressive of the reusers experience. There are, of

    course, implications for the ownership of culture thatclassical music has barely begun to entertain, and that in the high value such music places on the score, thecomposers personal style and the recording as adocument it may resist. Reich has been at the forefronthere, as in so many other ways. He sanctioned the 1999album Reich Remixed, which included a remix by DJSpooky of the opening movement of his City Life itself aremix of spoken and intrumental sounds, recorded andlive. On this occasion DJ Spooky will be sampling, too,the real-time contribution of the Kronos Quartet.Kronos Quartet engineered by Brian Mohr

    Also included on Reich Remixedwas a track by Coldcutbased on Music for 18 Musicians, the piece sampled here.Coldcut was born in London from the combined talents ofJonathan More, a former art teacher, and Matt Black, acomputer programmer. The pairs debut recording, SayKids, What Time Is It?(1987) was the first remix recordreleased in Britain, and in 1993 they set up the highlysuccessful independent record company Ninja Tunes.

    Exemplifying the African remix tradition to which DJ

    Spooky has referred, Konono No.1 is a group ofmusicians from the Angolan-Congolese border region ofBazombo who have built cymbals and microphones fromold car parts, turned kitchen hardware into percussioninstruments, and used loudspeakers discarded bydeparting European colonists. According to theBarbicans contemporary music programmer, BrynOrmrod, Konono No.1 is arguably the most obliqueinclusion in the programme for the Remixing Reichsession, partly because the group is not actually

    performing or remixing Reich's repertoire, and partlybecause at first glance Konono No.1 seems to have littlein common with Reich. Indeed before being invited to thefestival it is unlikely the musicians had even heard Reichsmusic before. What makes the group a relevant andfascinating inclusion is that its African Bazombo Trancemusic drifts close to Reichs (as it does to Kraftwerk, andKrautrock) creating an accidental connection. Familiarityresounds in the repetition and structure of the music, theapproach to harmony, and the DIY nature of Kononosprimitive electronica to create a hypnotic trance andrhythm that somehow links these distant musical relatives.

    For details of composers/performers please see pages 2835, Session 4

    17

    ColdcutDJ Spooky

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    18

    Session 5: ExtensionsSteve Reich (b. 1936) Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices and Organ (1973) c.17-20

    Steve Reich Ensemble Synergy Vocals

    Steve Reich Triple Quartet (1998) 14 Kronos QuartetDavid Harrington violin John Sherba violin Hank Dutt viola Jeffrey Zeigler cello

    Steve Reich Eight Lines (1979, rev. 1983) 17 Britten Sinfonia Tim Weissconductor

    Julia Wolfe (b. 1958) Lick (1994) 9 Bang on a Can All-Stars

    David Lang (b. 1957) Cheating, Lying, Stealing (1993) 15 Bang on a Can All-Stars

    Sunday 8 October Session 5 11am LSO St Lukes

    Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices and Organ,

    completed in May 1973, was Reichs next big piece afterDrumming. Again the musics skeleton by no meansobvious beneath its exuberant and colourfulembodiment is a gradual process; or rather, there aretwo processes, which happen at the same time and areinterrelated. One is a matter of gradually forming a copyof a pattern, out of phase with the original. The other triggered by the first, to use Reichs term is theprogressive deceleration of a different pattern. The firstprocess is executed by marimbas or glockenspiels, and its

    tendency is to increase rhythmic activity. There is thereforean evident contrast with the contributions of the womensvoices and the organ, involved in the second process andso producing longer and longer notes. But there isconnection, too, in that the mallet players progressivefiring up seems to give rise to the ever-steadier glow ofthe singers and organist. Also, one singer duplicatespatterns coming from the marimbas, and one malletplayer keeps track of the voices and organ. When theirprocess has reached its maximum extent, as measured byhow long a singer is physically able to sustain a note, thisaccompanying player moves into high speed and theother mallet instruments come back into synchrony,allowing the voices and organ to come down from theirdrawn-out ecstasy. All of this happens four times over,with changes of tonality and metre.

    Right from his student days Reich has found himselfworking with mixes of live performers and recordeddoubles. Along the way have come his Counterpoint

    series (of which three examples will be heard later today),

    Different Trainsand a second piece for the Kronos,

    Triple Quartet, in which the players perform with tworecorded images of themselves (though the piece canalso be done with all three quartets live). The work hasthree movements, fast-slow-fast. In the first, a cycle of fourminor-key dominant chords (to appear again in DanielVariations) is run through twice in slow motion.Meanwhile, the two recorded quartets play chords ininterlocking rhythms and the live first violin and violaunfold slow melodies in canon with the second violin andcello. The slow movement develops into a canon

    involving all 12 instrumental parts, and the finale returnsto the speed and the chords of the opening, but now withquicker changes of key.

    Reich has revealed that his starting point was the energyof the last movement of Bartks Fourth Quartet, and thattwo contemporaries also entered his working field. Theconflicting rhythms of Michael Gordons Yo Shakespearecontributed to how the two recorded quartets worktogether, and he was impressed also by the quartets ofAlfred Schnittke: Listening to the density of his music

    goaded me to thicken my own plot harmonically andmelodically. The result, he concludes, is a piececonsiderably more dissonant and expressionistic thanexpected.

    Steve Reichs Triple Quartetwas commissioned for the Kronos Quartet with funds provided bythe National Endowment for the Art s, David A. and Evelyne T. Lennette, Patricia Unterman andTim Savinar, and Meet the Composer/Arts Endowment Commissioning Music/USA, which ismade possible by generous support from The Helen F. Whitaker Fund, and The Catherine FileneShouse Foundation.

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    Session 5 11am LSO St Lukes Sunday 8 October

    Eight Lines, similar in length to the Triple Quartet, was

    originally written in 1979 for an ensemble of two pianos,string quartet and two wind players, who perform onflute and piccolo as well as clarinets and bass clarinets(though separate players may be employed for the twokinds of instrument). Reich initially called the piece Octeta classical name for a piece of classical delightfulness and then retitled it in 1983, when he decided to shareeach of the difficult string parts between two players.There are five sections, with the second and fourthdistinguished by sustained notes from the cello, and the

    first, third and last sporting bright, longer melodies in theflute and piccolo melodies affected by the composersrecent studies of Jewish cantillation, soon to lead on toTehillim. As he has pointed out, however, the moves fromone section to another are by no means conspicuous.Indeed, the piece can be enjoyed as one continuousstate, one slowly revolving object, sparkling with internalreflections. The pianos play constantly and are central,the other instruments often doubling them or holding theprevailing harmony.

    Julia Wolfe has been associated since 1987 with MichaelGordon and David Lang in Bang on a Can, a New Yorkmusical organisation they set up for mutual support andconcert-giving, by no means eschewing the rudeenergies of rock. Reich was to some extent their musicalgodfather, and he has responded with close interest.Wolfes nine-minute Lick is scored for a rock-likeensemble of soprano saxophone, electric guitar,percussion, piano, cello and double bass, all amplified,

    and is heavily into rock clichs, which it treats with some

    humour. The marking is: On the attack, funk. Reich has

    drawn particular attention to the opening: You hear avery sharp attack and then utter silence. Its all counted but you dont hear that. And then there will be anotherincredibly sharp attack, maybe two notes this time. Andthen theres nothing again, and youre just waiting untilanother one comes.

    Reich has also spoken admiringly of David LangsCheating, Lying, Stealing: Basically what hes doing

    is to take a cadential figure where the notes really work,theyre very strong, and he keeps varying the cadencerhythmically by an eighth note off each time. It keeps thematerial, which might be dull if you were just to repeat it,off-kilter in a way that keeps your attention. The piece,headed an ominous funk, is scored for bass clarinet,cello, piano and percussion, with two players on brakedrums stationed at either side of the platform. Towardsthe end the cello has a high line in long notes like alament, after which the piece goes back to whereit started.

    For details of composers/performers please see pages 2835, Session 5

    There is no interval in this performance.

    19

    Bang on a Can All-StarsSteve ReichPeterSerling

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    Reichs music is inseparable from the city of his birth and

    long-term residence from its race of vehicular andpedestrian tempos, its mix of traditions, its grid of blocks.His affectionate and amused, yet also at times darkening,portrait City Lifeduly opens this New York concert.Completed in 1994, the work brings the sounds of the cityinto the concert hall by means of recordings which can beplayed by two performers at keyboard samplers.Fragments of speech, traffic noises, subway bells,heartbeats and sirens can thus be introduced into theorchestral texture alongside figures on pianos, strings or

    woodwinds, and the two kinds of sound, recorded andinstrumental, can enjoy the same sort of rhythmic flexibility.

    Like such earlier works as Eight Lines, City Lifeexemplifiesthe ABCBA form that Bartk often favoured. The Bmovements are slow, include no speech, and involve aregular rhythmic background, suggestive of a heartbeat inthe second movement and then actualised as such in thefourth. In contrast, the middle movement starts out as aspeech duet and has speech sounds continuing all through,imitated and developed by the instruments. As in Its Gonna

    Rain, Reich found his material at an outdoor gathering ofblack Americans this time a political rally near City Hall(not far from his apartment). The first movement within ahymn-like enfolding that might be a homage to an earlierNew Yorkers vision of home, Coplands Quiet City isguided by a street vendor saying: Check it out! Technologyallows the mans speech melody to change its key. Thefinale again includes intermittent words, but the mood isvery different. Here Reich drew on the Fire Departmentsfield communications at the time of the ineffective 1993bombing of the World Trade Center, the voices heardthrough hazes of instrumental-recorded sounds.

    The intimate combination of speech fragments with

    instrumental lines seems to answer an expressive impulseto deal at once with the citys actuality and with its myth.Commissioned by the London Sinfonietta, the EnsembleInterContemporain and the Ensemble Modern, City Lifeisdirected at an audience familiar with New York from adistance, a distance mediated by films, novels, poetryand other music. At the same time, it contains awkwardedges of the real, some of which appear in a differentlight now than they did in 1994.

    Text1. Check it out3. Its been a honeymoon cant take no mo

    5. Heavy smoke(speech samples)Heavy smoke / stand by, stand by / its full asmoke / full a smoke / urgent etc. / Guns, knivesor weapons on ya? / Wha were ya doin? / Becareful, / where you go / careful / stand by, standby / careful / stand by

    Michael Gordons Gotham, taking one of the citys

    nicknames, is for an orchestra of moderate size withoutrecorded actuality though not without references to citynoises and entertainments. The score was composed in2003, and then the projections were set to it, created bythe film-maker Bill Morrison, the visual artist LaurieOlinder and the director Bob McGrath. According to thecomposer, this is the anti-picture-postcard New York: theeveryday, lived-in, grimy, muscular New York. The 10-minute first movement has a dreamlike opening for pianoin downward-upward scales with a solo violin alsoproceeding scalewise but much more slowly. Steadily bothtexture and intensity accumulate, and an alien presence

    Sunday 8 October Session 6 2pm LSO St Lukes

    Session 6: New YorkSteve Reich (b. 1936) City Life (1994) 24 Britten Sinfonia Stefan Asburyconductor

    1. Check it out 2. Pile driver/alarms 3. Its been a honeymoon Cant take no mo 4. Heartbeats/boats and buoys 5. Heavy smoke

    Michael Gordon (b. 1956) Gotham (2003) 27 Britten Sinfonia Stefan Asburyconductor1. Spacious 2. Intense and relentless 3. Exuberant

    Steve Reich New York Counterpoint (1985) 11 Evan Ziporyn clarinets, tape

    Michael Gordon The Sad Park (2005) UK premiere 36 Kronos QuartetDavid Harrington violin John Sherba violin Hank Dutt viola Jeffrey Zeigler cello1. two evil planes broke in little pieces and fire came 2. there was a big boom and then there was teeny fiery coming out 3. I just heard that on the news that the buildings are crashing down 4. and all the persons that were in the airplane died

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    Session 6 2pm LSO St Lukes/Freestage 3.45pm Barbican Foyer Sunday 8 October

    arrives about two thirds of the way through. The second

    movement is pulse-driven, with searing slow downwardglissandos from the woodwinds and trumpets. The third,is a dance, led off by the two groups of violins in a 12-barperiod that steadily rises, gaining canons andcounterpoints, and then pushes forward a second, longerprocess of general rising.

    New York Counterpoint, for clarinet with 10 recordedclarinets and bass clarinets, was the second in asequence of mirror dances that began with Vermont

    Counterpoint(1982) for flute and continued with theelectric guitar and cello pieces to be heard this afternoonand evening. This piece, in three linked movements,features pulses out of Music for 18 Musiciansand canonsout of everywhere in Reichs music, created by the liveplayer and unseen echoes. The middle movement goesat half speed, and the finale plays characteristicallyReichian games of syncopation in 12-beat bars that canbe interpreted as containing three fours or four threes. AsReich puts it: The function of the bass clarinets is to

    accent first one and then the other of these possibilities,while the upper clarinets essentially do not change. Theeffect is to vary the perception of what is in fact notchanging and to create a kind of jazz mobile.

    The story of the city comes up to date in The Sad Park,which Michael Gordon composed last year for theKronos Quartet. This is a piece aptly placed here, since itcarries at least two Reichian strands. Like City LifeandDifferent Trains, it interweaves instrumental parts and

    recorded speech. It also makes extensive use of a

    procedure Reich imagined in 1967, before the technical

    means existed, that of slow motion sound, wherebysounds in this case speech sounds are slowed downwithout change of pitch or colour. The composer writesfurther: The recordings used in this piece of children,ages three and four, were made by Loyan Beausoleil,pre-kindergarten teacher at University Plaza NurserySchool in Lower Manhattan, between September 2001and January 2002. (My son Lev was in Ms. Beausoleilsclass during this period.) Her ongoing work with thesechildren is chronicled at www.youngestwitnesses.com.

    When I heard these recordings I was struck by the rawtunefulness of the childrens speech. These specificsegments were chosen for their musicality as well as fortheir content. I worked with sound designer Luke DuBoison the post-production of these tapes. In Parts 1 and 3,the sound clips are gradually slowed down to reveal thehidden acoustical properties of the speech. Parts 2 and 4use an electronic music technique called granularsynthesis, in which tiny grains of sound from the originalsource are captured and compacted together.

    Text1. two evil planes broke in little pieces and fire came

    2. there was a big boom and then there was teeny fierycoming out

    3. I just heard that on the news that the buildings arecrashing down

    4. and all the persons that were in the airplane died

    The Sad Parkwas commissioned for the Kronos Quartet through the generosity of Mrs. Ralph I.Dorfman with additional support from the Barbican, London, and the National Endowment forthe Arts.

    For details of composers/performers please see pages 2835, Session 6

    There is no interval in this performance.

    21

    Sunday 8 October 3.45pm Barbican Foyer Freestage

    Konono No.1A free performance from

    Congolese Trance outfitFor information on Konono No.1 see pages 28-35, Session 4

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    David Lang composed World to Comefor

    performance by the musician who plays it here, with avideo environment by Irit Batsry. The soloist plays witheight recorded cellos and is also required to vocalise, in amiddle register comfortable for men or women players.In four movements playing without interruption, the piecelasts a little under 25 minutes.

    The first movement has only two recorded cellos, workingwith the live player in a narrow register with lines of smallchant-like motifs. On a parallel plane, the performersvocalisation gives the movement a direction. With no

    change of tempo but a move to quicker note values, thesecond movement introduces jittery activity whichbecomes the accompaniment for a slow high melody forthe live cellist, given the instruction: Float over the top.

    A carpet of rising threads from recorded cellos initiates thethird movement, with the live cello building up anddismantling a slow rising melody that in each of itstransformations comes to rest on its final note. This melodicplay is maintained by a recorded cello as the liveperformer moves to ascending arpeggios in harmonics.

    The live cello returns to the melody, but the movement endswith the arpeggios, in a trio for live and recorded cellos.

    The finale is begun by the cellist singing, joined by arecorded voice. Then the melody of the precedingmovement is reintroduced by a recorded cello the onlyone present in this movement and taken by the soloistas her own.

    Glenn Branca explains about the genesis of Lesson

    No.3 (A Tribute to Steve Reich).

    Around 1980, when my Lesson No.1 was released, afriend of mine knew someone who knew Steve. (Iwouldnt meet Steve until years later. I should mention thatI was a serious fan of his work, having got hold of Musicfor Mallet Instruments, Four Organsand Come Outwhen I was living in Boston in the mid-1970s I didntstart living in New York until late in 1976. All of thosepieces were incredibly important to me. I was writing a lotof music for my theatre group The Bastard Theatre at the

    time. And both process and repetition among otherthings Penderecki-style clusters and thick beautifulMessiaen chords were right in the groove with what Iwas thinking about. Not to mention blowing my mind.)My friend reported back that Steve had heard the recordand commented about Lesson No.1: Oh thats Phil[Glass]. But he also mentioned that Steve had liked thepiece on the flip side: Dissonance. I was thrilled.

    Earlier this year, when I was talking to Bryn Ormrod of theBarbican about doing something as part of the Reich

    festival, I mentioned this story to him and suggested thatmaybe I should write a Lesson for Steve. There had beena Lesson No.2on my album The Ascensionso Isuggested it be called Lesson No.3 (A Tribute to SteveReich). Bryn went for it immediately.

    This is yet another thrill for me. I still love Steve more thanever. What can I say? The piece is probably as close as Iwill ever get to a classic 1970s Reichian minimalism (exceptfor The Temple of Venus in The World Upside Down).Lesson No.3 (A Tribute to Steve Reich)was commissioned by the Barbican Centre

    Sunday 8 October Session 7 5pm Barbican Theatre

    Session 7: Responses to ReichDavid Lang (b. 1957) World to Come (2003) 23 Maya Beiser cello

    1. Mysterious and oddly pulsing, like a heavy heartbeat 2. [no marking] 3. [no marking] 4. Angelic and pureGlenn Branca (b. 1948) Lesson No.3 (A Tribute to Steve Reich) (2006) world premiere 15'John Myers guitar Regina Bloor guitar Libby Fabricatore guitar Greg McMullen guitar VirgilMoorefield drums

    Steve Reich (b. 1936) Electric Counterpoint (1987) 15 Dominic Frasca guitar

    Gavin Bryars (b. 1943) The Stones of the Arch (2006) world premiere 12 Kronos Quartet David Harrington violinJohn Sherba violin Hank Dutt viola Jeffrey Zeigler celloTheatre of Voices/Paul Hillier Philip JeckturntableistText ofThe Stones of the Arch is available separately at this session.

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    Session 7 5pm Barbican Theatre Sunday 8 October

    Written just two years after New York Counterpoint, in the

    summer of 1987, Electric Counterpointis somewhatsimilar in having benign arrivals of pulsation, a jump tohalved speed for the middle movement and a finalesashaying between triple and quadruple metres. It playsfor a little longer, around a quarter of an hour, and wascreated for this afternoons soloist, in combination withrecordings of 10 electric guitars and two bass guitars. Thefirst movement is based on a theme from Central Africanhorn music, treated in eight-part canon by recordedguitars, with the live player picking out resultant melodic

    patterns. This principle of the live performer exploring arecorded canon, now for nine guitars and on a differenttheme reappears in the slow movement. There arefurther canons in the finale, where the bass guitars, likethe bass clarinets in New York Counterpoint, swing themusic between three fours and four threes, the latterwinning out.

    Gavin Bryars writes about The Stones of the Archasfollows: This piece for two quartets one of voices, one of

    strings was commissioned by the Barbican Centre forthis festival celebrating the 70th birthday of Steve Reich,to whom the work is dedicated. The instrumentationcame about because of the practical concern to useplayers who were already involved in the festival (whoalso happened to be known to me personally). The choiceof text, however, as for any vocal work, was most critical. Idecided not to use the Old Testament, which might havebeen a more obvious source although I have set variousPsalms, lines from Proverbs and parts of Genesis. Instead I

    chose two poems by the Scottish poet George Bruce,

    whose work I discovered when setting sonnets by Edwin

    Morgan. Here the second poem, The Stones of the Arch,written in 2000 when the poet was approaching his 90thbirthday, is a reconsideration of the first, A Gateway tothe Sea, from 50 years earlier. It was George Bruces ideaof working on something from the past by creatingsomething new, rather than rewrite or edit, that I foundparticularly attractive, especially as the poems are sodifferent.

    In the music I also sought to avoid any direct reference toSteves work, although there are a couple of figures in the

    cello that could be seen as allusive, and the piece clearlydoes involve some repetition. I preferred to acknowledge,rather, the fact that neither Steve nor I are constrained byour past work but, at the same time, are inevitablyconditioned by it to some extent. The two poems make upthe two parts of the piece, which is played without abreak.

    There is an optional part for a solo improviser workingideally with simple live electronics. My choice for the firstperformance was Philip Jeck, who works with vinyl

    records on old gramophone turntables and with whom Ihad worked on a performance of The Sinking of theTitanicin Venice. The improvisation starts before thescore proper and overlaps the opening section up to thefirst vocal entry. Thereafter he is free to play at any timebut is more prominent in the interlude between the twopoems, and at the end.

    For details of composers/performers please see pages 2835, Session 7

    There is no interval in this performance.

    23

    Gavin BryarsGlenn Branca

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    24

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    Freestage Bang on a Can All-Stars Sunday 8 October

    25

    Manhattawas written in 2003 to accompany the 1920

    silent film of the same name, directed and photographed byPaul Strand and Charles Sheeler. The piece itself is amarathon. Although only 11 minutes in duration, it has adriven, relentless bass line, which interplays with an equallyrhythmic and linear melody line that seems to propel thevisuals, perfectly reflecting Strand and Sheeler'sphotographic style and sharp editing. At 212 beats perminute (also the area code for Manhattan), it is as if Nymanis daring the people in the film to go about their daily lives atan even faster and more furious pace than they already are.

    The title for Believing came to me after the music hadbeen written. During the time I was working on the piece Ihad been listening to a song by John Lennon calledTomorrow never knows. Its a fantastic song verypsychedelic written at a time when the Beatles wereexploring spiritual questions. You can hear it in the music,and in the words. There's a line, It is believing that comesback again and again. Believing is such a powerful word full of optimism and struggle. Its hard to believe and itsliberating to believe. It is my second piece for the group

    and I feel that I have really gotten inside their sound.Julia Wolfe 2006

    ShadowBangis a traditional Balinese wayang kulitwith new, non-gamelan music and extended lightingtechniques. Most of the piece is dominated by the voiceand movements of I Wayan Wija, a brilliant dalangin theclassical style. As in all Balinese shadow puppetry, Wijatells two stories at once: a lofty narrative based on Hindumythology, as framed by the adventures and

    commentary of various servants and sidekicks, in this

    case, the brothers Dalem and Sangut. These four

    movements frame the piece, drawing on the deep andsurface structures of Balinese music but taking them invery different directions in terms of timbre, harmony, andaffect. Angkat is travel music; Ocean and Meditasiare background music; Head is an overture.Evan Ziporyn 2006

    It has always seemed to us in Bang on a Can that LouisAndriessen is one of the European composers wholistened hard to American music, coming up with his own

    solutions to our national musical problems. In America ofthe 1960s there were many composers who wereexperimenting with open forms pieces that leftsomething unspecified, like the choice of instruments, orthe order of musical ideas, or the co-ordination of theindividual parts. A lot of composers were trying to findout how to take the controls away from making music.Workers Unionis the young(ish) Andriessen'scontribution to this approach. Everything is specified inthis piece except the notes the rhythms, the phrases, theattitude are all there, but not the notes. It is clearly a piece

    that owes something to the American experimentaltradition but what that thing is is hard to hear.David Lang 2006

    Manhatta, by Michael Nyman and arranged by Andy Keenan, was commissioned for the Bangon a Can All-Stars with generous support from the River to River Festival and the WorldFinancial Center Arts & Events. Believingwas commissioned by NPS Dutch Radio for the Bangon a Can All-Stars. The music from ShadowBangwas created with the support of the NationalEndowment for the Arts and the Rockefeller Multi-Arts Production Fund.

    For information on composers/performers see pages 2835:Bang on a Can All-Stars and Julia Wolfe, Session 5; EvanZiporyn, Session 6; and Michael Nyman and Louis Andriessen,

    Freestage 8 October, page 34.

    Sunday 8 October 6.45pm Barbican Foyer Freestage

    Bang on a Can All-Stars

    Michael Nyman (b.1934) arr. Andy Keenan Manhatta (2003/2006) 11Julia Wolfe (b.1958) Believing (1997) 9Evan Ziporyn (b.1959) Music from ShadowBang (2001) 15Angkat Ocean Meditasi Head

    Louis Andriessen (b.1939) Workers Union (1975) 16

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    Composed in 2003 for tonights soloist, Cello

    Counterpointhas eight lines, seven of which may bepre-recorded, as here. It has three movements in a fast-slow-fast pattern, and plays continuously. As thecomposer explains: The first and last movements areboth based on a similar four-chord cycle that movesambiguously back and forth between C minor and E flatmajor. This harmonic cycle is treated extremely freely,however, particularly in the third movement. As a matterof fact, what strikes me most about these movements isthat they are generally the freest in structure of any I have

    written. The second, slow movement is a canon in E flatminor involving, near the end, seven separate voices.

    About Daniel Variationsthe composer writes:

    The piece is in four movements using texts from theBiblical book of Daniel for the first and third movementsand from the words of Daniel Pearl, the American Jewishreporter, kidnapped and murdered by Islamist extremistsin Pakistan in 2002, for the second and fourth movements.

    The first text, from the fourth chapter of the book ofDaniel, is spoken by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon(modern-day Iraq). He is asking Daniel to interpret hisdream of terror. Right now it is unfortunately possible tofeel a chill of identification with these words.

    The second text was spoken by Daniel Pearl while hiscaptors videotaped him: My name is Daniel Pearl. Im aJewish American from Encino, California. I use only thefirst five words in the music itself since the statement is soemblematic of this remarkable person. In Jewish tradition,

    and in many others, names are indicative of character.

    The third text is the Biblical Daniels response to

    Nebuchadnezzar.The last text is a bit of a surprise and is explained by afriend of Daniel Pearl as follows: Once, during a two-day bike trip up the Potomac River, his friend TomJennings asked about his belief in an afterlife. I dontknow, Danny replied. I dont have answers, mainly justquestions. Then he added: But I sure hope Gabriel likesmy music. After Danny died, Tom was going through hisfriends vinyl collection (Dvork, Liszt, Miles Davis, REM)and stumbled across this album: Stuff Smith and the Onyx

    Club Orchestra. Danny loved Stuff Smith a great jazzviolinist, Tom says. Here on side A, track 3, I found this:Stuff Smith playing I Hope Gabriel Likes My Music.

    I have not used any of the music or lyrics of the song andhave even added to the title. I hope Danny would approve.

    Musically,Daniel Variationshas two related harmonicground plans. One for the first and third movements usesfour minor dominant chords a minor third apart, in Eminor, G minor, B flat minor and C sharp minor. The other

    harmonic plan is for the second and fourth movementsand uses four major dominant chords in the relative majorkeys, G, B flat, D flat and E. This gives a darker chromaticharmony to the first and third movements and a moreaffirmative harmonic underpinning to the second andfourth. Since Daniel Pearl was not only a reporter, but alsoplayed the fiddle particularly jazz and blue grass thestrings take the lead melodically in the second and fourthmovements, sometimes doubled by the two clarinets.

    The piece is scored for two sopranos and two tenors with

    two B flat clarinets, four vibes, bass and kick drum, tam-

    Sunday 8 October Session 8 8pm Barbican Hall

    Session 8: Quintessential ReichSteve Reich (b. 1936) Cello Counterpoint (2003) London premiere12 Maya Beiser cello

    Steve Reich Daniel Variations (2006) world premiere c. 30 Steve Reich Ensemble Synergy Vocals Brad Lubman conductor1. I saw a dream. Images upon my bed and visions in my head frightened me. (Daniel 4:2 or 4:5 in Christian translations)

    2. My name is Daniel Pearl (I'm a Jewish American from Encino, California)

    3. Let the dream fall back on the dreaded (Daniel 4:16 or 4:19 in Christian translations)

    4. I sure hope Gabriel likes my music, when the day is done.

    Steve Reich Music for 18 Musicians (1976) c. 65 Steve Reich and Musicians Synergy Vocals

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    Session 8 8pm Barbican Hall Sunday 8 October

    tam, four pianos and string quartet. The London

    performance is dedicated to the 5th Daniel Pearl WorldMusic Days (www.music-days.org), 6-15 October.

    Text

    1. I saw a dream. Images upon my bed and visions in my head

    frightened me.

    2. My name is Daniel Pearl (I'm a Jewish American from Encino,

    California)

    3. Let the dream fall back on the dreaded

    4. I sure hope Gabriel likes my music, when the day is done.

    Daniel Variationswas co-commissioned by the Barbican Centre, London, Carnegie Hall in

    New York, Cit de la Musique in Paris, Casa de Musica in Porto, Portugal, and in memory ofDaniel Pearl by an anonymous donor in association with Meet The Composer and the DanielPearl Foundation, which is dedicated to cross-cultural understanding and music.

    INTERVAL

    Music for 18 Musicianstakes us back for an hour to 30years ago, when Reich was at the peak of his earlymaturity, and when it was more easily possible to beoptimistic about the world. The piece is a joy machine.Reich wrote it in 197476 for an unusually large ensemble,with his commonly central mallet instruments and pianos