Cover image of Meet the Composer
(197)
Arts
Music
Performing Arts
Music Commentary

Meet the Composer

Updated 3 days ago

Arts
Music
Performing Arts
Music Commentary
Read more

Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds of the composers making some of the most innovative and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Read more

Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds of the composers making some of the most innovative and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

iTunes Ratings

197 Ratings
Average Ratings
177
14
3
1
2

As good as it gets

By Oripah - Aug 15 2018
Read more
This show is required listening for any creator.

I miss this show

By Cinbadthesailor... - Jul 26 2018
Read more
Such interesting stuff for a music lover (but not music student) like me.

iTunes Ratings

197 Ratings
Average Ratings
177
14
3
1
2

As good as it gets

By Oripah - Aug 15 2018
Read more
This show is required listening for any creator.

I miss this show

By Cinbadthesailor... - Jul 26 2018
Read more
Such interesting stuff for a music lover (but not music student) like me.

Listen to:

Cover image of Meet the Composer

Meet the Composer

Updated 3 days ago

Read more

Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds of the composers making some of the most innovative and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Nico Muhly: Community Theater

Podcast cover
Read more

First, a disclaimer. I wanna make something clear right off the bat here: I'm completely in the tank for Nico Muhly. We went to college together and he has been one of my best friends and most frequent collaborators ever since. But! He is deeply gifted creator, and honestly I'd feel insane not featuring him just because we're close.

Okay.

Nico is a composer with a very specific point of view – a rabid communicator whose personality factors massively in his work. Nico works extremely well with others; his collaborators live and create in an environment that is just foreign enough to instigate surprising, brilliant results. He curates community on a grand scale, corresponding with dozens of people a day, and is the hardest working person I have ever met. Nico lives his life out loud, and his music is stunning, hilarious, touching, and brilliant.

Dec 11 2015

1hr 2mins

Play

Meredith Monk: Creation as Spiritual Practice

Podcast cover
Read more

Living legend Meredith Monk is a composer, vocalist, dancer, choreographer and filmmaker. While all of these descriptors are technically on point, none quite gets to the bones of who she is as an artist. Meredith seamlessly blends these media into arresting performance pieces that feel like rituals – rites from another dimension. 

Take a tour with Meredith of her longtime Tribeca home-studio: http://bit.ly/1f0Urxo

Jun 30 2015

1hr 7mins

Play

Anna Thorvaldsdottir: Composing Is Second Nature

Podcast cover
Read more

Anna Thorvaldsdottir is an Icelandic composer whose work conjures entire environments of sound, surrounding the listener in a dark and forbidding landscape. Anna thinks sonically; her music comes from a deeply non-verbal place, and she has developed a brilliant workflow which allows these ideas to remain mostly whole and unmolested through her creative process. Anna often favors massive ensembles, writing delicate and detailed parts for every player, but even when she is writing for smaller forces, she somehow summons these massive sonorities — detailed, elegant tapestries with a seductive gravity, which pull the listener in with their gradually revolving color and texture.

Nov 09 2015

55mins

Play

Splitting Adams: John Adams' Chamber Symphonies

Podcast cover
Read more

What happens when the composer shows up to the first rehearsal of his brand-new piece? Would a living Beethoven sue for intellectual property? Are you the hit, or are you in the hole? For this episode, we collaborated with the 20-member chamber ensemble Alarm Will Sound and its conductor Alan Pierson – with whom we're partnering on the upcoming podcast album Splitting Adams (out April 21 on Cantaloupe Music) –  to take a close look at the music of John Adams, specifically his two insanely difficult chamber symphonies. This episode offers unprecedented access to not only to the creative process, but the weird, woolly procedure of putting these massive pieces together.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 20 2017

36mins

Play

Kaija Saariaho: Ears Open

Podcast cover
Read more

Kaija Saariaho's music evokes all sorts of natural sounds, the kinds of complex, white noise-y sounds that we often tune out. She's able to take the instruments of the orchestra and pull out of them the sound of wind rustling through trees, or waves hitting the shore. She's got this ear that can hear the music in everything, but in not in a John Cage way — she's not putting all sounds on an equal playing field. Instead, she teases harmonies out of these sounds, finding notes that were aaaalmost there to begin with.

Kaija is famous for writing moving, visceral works full of difficult new instrumental techniques. She often writes for acoustic instruments with almost subliminal electronic manipulation — it's hard to tell where the performer leaves off and the electronics begin, and she's written full scale operas, often with strong, historically-inspired female protagonists, grappling with huge themes, love and death, that kind of thing. - Nadia Sirota

Jul 30 2015

1hr 3mins

Play

Download: 'Viola Concerto: Part II' by Nico Muhly

Podcast cover
Read more

I'm so excited to share today's Meet the Composer bonus track with you. Last October, I traveled to Detroit to perform the US premiere of Nico Muhly's viola concerto with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra under Maestro Leonard Slatkin. The orchestra has graciously agreed to let us use the second movement of the viola concerto for our show for three months, so this is our first ever LIMITED-TIME bonus track. 

Nico wrote the concerto in 2014, and in a lot of ways it's the fruit of 10 years of our working together. The piece is in three movements, and this movement, Part II, is sort of the emotional heart of the piece. It's soulful and colorful and I adore playing it. 

At the end of the movement the viola line suffers a sort of massive emotional breakdown, which is then answered by a huge orchestral explosion, featuring a giant tam-tam (gong) and all sorts of low-brass rumbles. In the aftermath, individual members of the orchestra play small phrases independently of each other, finally reuniting in a wounded coda. 

This is my favorite part of the concerto to play. 

Many, many thanks to the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Leonard Slatkin for making this bonus track possible!

Dec 28 2015

9mins

Play

Henry Threadgill: Dirt, and More Dirt

Podcast cover
Read more

1967, Fort Riley, Kansas. Henry Threadgill is 23 years old. Knowing he’s going to be drafted into the military, he joins the Army Concert Band, hoping to focus on his passion: writing music. As he surrounds himself with new ideas, he works his influences into the music that he's arranging. Then one day, the band plays one of his arrangements of a patriotic song for an inauguration of big-wigs, and from the calm of a quietly confused crowd comes a cry from a cardinal in attendance: “Blasphemy!”

One day later, he’s told to gather his things. Thirty days later, he’s on his way to Vietnam. Fifty years later, he wins the Pulitzer Prize for music composition.

This is only the beginning of the story of how the energy, hunger and curiosity of Henry Threadgill have influenced and changed the people around him. In spite of the failure and rejection he’s faced, Threadgill is perpetually driven toward new ideas, new challenges and new opportunities to pursue and grow stronger in his improvisational creative vision. His music is the product of the community he builds in the moment.

This is the story of Henry Threadgill, told by the people whose lives he has touched.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

May 01 2017

41mins

Play

Download: Anna Thorvaldsdottir's 'Scape' Performed by Pianist Cory Smythe

Podcast cover
Read more

This week’s Meet the Composer Bonus Track is a world premiere recording of Anna Thorvaldsdottir’s piano work Scape. Scape, like many of Anna’s works, uses extended techniques to create unique, otherworldly textures. For this piece, Anna demands quite a bit of playing INSIDE the instrument, as well as a few somewhat unconventional preparations to the instrument itself. Prepared piano basically means a piano with stuff in it, screws, thimbles, tin foil, pieces of paper, the type of thing that’ll make a piano technician start to sweat. The first couple people to do this type of thing were crazy Americans, Henry Cowell and John Cage. Definitely take a moment to check those guys out, if you have a sec. Anna, very much in keeping with her timbral language, uses these techniques to carve out massive swaths of sonic texture, creating a huge universe in a relatively limited time frame. A couple weeks ago, Cory Smythe, pianist for the International Contemporary Ensemble, stopped by the Q2 Music studios to create the beautiful world premiere recording. 

Nov 24 2015

11mins

Play

The Performer: Part Two, Pauline

Podcast cover
Read more

We continue our investigation of the odd, wrong-side-of-the-tv-set role of The Performer with a deep dive into the "Sonic Meditations" of pioneering American composer Pauline Oliveros. Pauline manages to smudge at the distinction between composer, performer and audience with these simple, text-based pieces, which somehow pack an emotional wallop far larger than their few lines might suggest. 

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 14 2017

33mins

Play

Bonus Track: Pauline Oliveros' 'Tuning Meditation'

Podcast cover
Read more

Today's Bonus Track is an extended cut of Pauline Oliveros' "Tuning Meditation," recorded live at the Fuentidueña Chapel at the Met Cloisters on Jan. 20, 2017. Recorded in 3D-sounding binaural audio, it's an immersive experience in which we would love you to think about participating while listening. For optimal audio quality, please listen with headphones!

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream — hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity — and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 16 2017

24mins

Play

Ingram Marshall: A Connecticut Hippie In California

Podcast cover
Read more

Ingram Marshall is often called a California Minimalist, a title which, while not exactly geographically accurate, allies him with a loose cadre of artists writing ambient, visceral scores. It's a title he'll happily wear, but it only vaguely describes they art he makes. Ingram is kind of a throwback - a free-thinker making music on his own, music that accesses a deep, emotional place. His music leaves the listener gutted, keyed into something beyond consciousness. It's ambience with a purpose, slowly inevitably unfolding towards a climax.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Oct 05 2015

1hr 7mins

Play

From the Vaults, Part Five: Meet the Composer With Leonard Bernstein

Podcast cover
Read more

We conclude the week-long ramp-up to our next and third season with an interview with the legendary, charismatic Leonard Bernstein. Though mostly known for his work as a composer (West Side Story) and conductor (New York Philharmonic), Leonard Bernstein was also a consummate evangelist for classical music. This conversation focuses on Bernstein's efforts as a music educator and the role that education played for host Tim Page in his music criticism.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 03 2017

13mins

Play

Bonus Track: JACK Quartet Performs Georg Friedrich Haas' String Quartet No. 9

Podcast cover
Read more

We are thrilled to bring you a WORLD PREMIERE recording as our first bonus track of Season Three!

Our previous episode, The Performer: Part One, featured, among other things, a fascinating conversation with the Austrian composer Georg Friedrich Haas. As we are a talk show about music, we are always dying to simply play some MUSIC, and so today we bring you our exclusive, world premiere recording of Haas’ 9th String Quartet. The whole thing! Featuring the fantastic JACK Quartet.

The JACK Quartet has spent years performing and championing an older piece of Haas’, his 3rd String Quartet. They played it so well, in fact, Haas decided to write his ninth quartet specifically for the JACKs, taking full advantage of their superpower: just intonation. So we figured, what could be better than having the JACKs over to Q2 Music to bring this piece to life?

Like his 3rd String Quartet, this piece comes with an unusual stipulation: it is to be performed in complete, india-ink, can’t-see-your-hand-in-front-of-your-face darkness. So turn out the lights and join Meet the Composer and the JACKs for the first-ever recording of this spectacular piece of oddly-tuned awesome.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 07 2017

51mins

Play

Bonus Track: John Adams' 'Coast,' Unplugged

Podcast cover
Read more

Today's bonus track is an exclusive arrangement of a nutso, sci-fi-y electronic piece John Adams wrote in 1993. Originally part of a larger work, Hoodoo Zephyr, Coast was never intended to be performed live. However, the 20-person chamber ensemble Alarm Will Sound has often been tempted by electronic works. Violinist, composer, and Alarm Will Sound member Caleb Burhans, who cut his teeth arranging works by Aphex Twin for the group, adapted Adams' work. While Alarm Will Sound has performed this piece several times, we're proud to bring this you exclusive recording! 

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream — hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity — and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 21 2017

13mins

Play

From the Vaults, Part Two: Meet the Composer With John Cage

Podcast cover
Read more

We continue the week-long ramp-up to our next and third season with an interview with the widely influential patriarch of 20th-century experimental music John Cage. In this conversation with host Tim Page, Cage explains how his strenuous connection with music precipitated his experiments with silence, ambient noise and spirituality. Page offers his own straightforward critique of Cage's discoveries and reiterates the need for objectivity and seclusion in music criticism. 

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Feb 28 2017

12mins

Play

Paul Simon’s Curious Mind

Podcast cover
Read more

Paul Simon has always been attracted to new kinds of sounds. From his early band Simon & Garfunkel in the 1960s through solo albums like Graceland and Rhythm of the Saints in the '80s and '90s, up through his recent albums So Beautiful or So What and Stranger to Stranger, Paul has made music that does what the very best art can do: it resonates with our experience, re-frames it, and introduces new timbres and ideas.

Recently, Paul’s curious mind has brought him into the world of contemporary classical music, mining the microtonal sound world of Harry Partch for his last record, and, just last month, collaborating with 10 composers and the ensemble yMusic on a set at the Eaux Claires music festival. On this episode, we hear Paul’s perspective on his career and his most recent projects, as well as exclusive audio from the festival collaboration itself.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Jul 10 2017

52mins

Play

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith's 'Clouds Forming Over Mount Baker'

Podcast cover
Read more

We began last week’s episode digging into the music of one particular electronic musician - the synthesist, producer and composer Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith.

Today we’re thrilled to bring you a song that you won’t hear on any of Kaitlyn’s albums. Clouds Forming Over Mount Baker was commissioned by the University of Pennsylvania’s Arthur Ross Gallery to accompany a landscape photograph by Eliot Porter.

It’s a fitting collaboration, as Smith grew up on Orcas Island, where Mt. Baker is a visible feature. Join us for this rich, synthesized soundscape, bringing sonic life to Porter’s beautiful photograph.  

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Jun 12 2017

15mins

Play

The Producer

Podcast cover
Read more

What happens when a composer writes music without pen and paper, using machines? How does that change the creative process? How does it morph the art itself? 

Today on Meet the Composer, our producer Alex Overington — usually behind the studio glass — takes us on a road trip to unravel the creative process of those composers who write without a score. We meet the synthesists, the samplers, the electronic musicians, and dive deep into the tools they’ve adopted to define their craft. 

Join us as we uncover what it means to be a composer who sculpts directly with sound, through conversations with such artists as Matmos, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, Tyondai Braxton, Laurie Anderson, Morton Subotnick and more.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Jun 05 2017

1hr

Play

Bryce Dessner's 'Wires,' Performed by Ensemble Intercontemporain

Podcast cover
Read more
For today’s Bonus Track, we’re thrilled to bring you the world-premiere recording of Bryce Dessner’s Wires, performed by Ensemble Intercontemporain!

Last week, we dug into a particularly contentious moment in classical music’s history. This week, however, we’re looking at where we are NOW, a place of, well… niceness.  

“I think right now is a really good time to be a composer,” says composer John Adams. “And I tell young composers that. They don't believe me, but they don't know how difficult it was back when I was in my 20s and 30s.”

We'll hear how David Lang’s group Bang on a Can helped to shape a newfound culture of support and generosity, and how the next generation of composers - including Bryce Dessner - can find creative freedom in this new landscape. Finally, we hear from Bryce what it’s like to write for “the Rolls Royce … of New Music,” with his new piece, Wires, for Ensemble Intercontemporian, led by Matthias Pintscher.  

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

May 22 2017

21mins

Play

New Music Fight Club

Podcast cover
Read more

It was composer pitted against composer: uptown vs. downtown, tonal vs. atonal, left brain vs right brain, and these musicians were NOT pulling any punches. Composers were antagonizing each other, questioning each other's validity, and bad-mouthing one another; it was like the second half of the 20th century was when Western Music went through middle school, and it was brutal! 

“If you weren't being a constructivist composer, if the music wasn't indeed about its own structure, and its own structure wasn't complicated, then you were a pariah, you were rejected. You didn’t get tenure. You didn’t get a job.” That’s Robert Sirota - Nadia’s Dad - one of many composers who came of age in the midst of this feud and struggled - for years - to find a voice.

On this episode of Meet the Composer, we unravel one of the most contentious periods in classical music’s history. How did this fight begin? How did it play out? Who were the contenders?  We hear from composers on both sides of this battle, and discover how, on all ends of the aesthetic spectrum, we can find value in differences.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

May 15 2017

44mins

Play

Henry Threadgill’s Zooid, Live at the Village Vanguard

Podcast cover
Read more

Henry Threadgill’s music and community can’t be separated; there is no boundary: challenge and failure and growth in music are the same as challenge and failure and growth in life. This Meet the Composer bonus track shares an exclusive performance by Henry Threadgill's Zooid ensemble of I Never, recorded live by Q2 Music at the Village Vanguard on Oct. 2, 2016.

Throughout his career, Threadgill has led countless ensembles with diverse instrumentations and personalities. And in each of them, he finds a way to unearth a type of asymmetry – a blend of unease and transcendence that comes across in his remarkably structured compositions. He unites musicians in the same way as he composes: with affection for the mysterious, embrace of the unexpected, and spontaneity guided by uncompromising intellect. As Threadgill has said, “Improvisation is a way to live your life and solve problems.” Music is one outlet, one way to activate this philosophy, which is something we hear echoed often from his collaborators.

In this recording, we hear the 2016 Pulitzer Prize laureate leading his longstanding chamber ensemble, Zooid, in a live performance inside the legendary New York City underground jazz venue, the Village Vanguard.

Performers:

Henry Threadgill, alto sax
Liberty Ellman, tres
Christopher Hoffman, cello
José Davila, tuba
Elliot Humberto Kavee, drums, percussion

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

May 08 2017

20mins

Play

Henry Threadgill: Dirt, and More Dirt

Podcast cover
Read more

1967, Fort Riley, Kansas. Henry Threadgill is 23 years old. Knowing he’s going to be drafted into the military, he joins the Army Concert Band, hoping to focus on his passion: writing music. As he surrounds himself with new ideas, he works his influences into the music that he's arranging. Then one day, the band plays one of his arrangements of a patriotic song for an inauguration of big-wigs, and from the calm of a quietly confused crowd comes a cry from a cardinal in attendance: “Blasphemy!”

One day later, he’s told to gather his things. Thirty days later, he’s on his way to Vietnam. Fifty years later, he wins the Pulitzer Prize for music composition.

This is only the beginning of the story of how the energy, hunger and curiosity of Henry Threadgill have influenced and changed the people around him. In spite of the failure and rejection he’s faced, Threadgill is perpetually driven toward new ideas, new challenges and new opportunities to pursue and grow stronger in his improvisational creative vision. His music is the product of the community he builds in the moment.

This is the story of Henry Threadgill, told by the people whose lives he has touched.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

May 01 2017

41mins

Play

Bonus Track: John Adams' 'Coast,' Unplugged

Podcast cover
Read more

Today's bonus track is an exclusive arrangement of a nutso, sci-fi-y electronic piece John Adams wrote in 1993. Originally part of a larger work, Hoodoo Zephyr, Coast was never intended to be performed live. However, the 20-person chamber ensemble Alarm Will Sound has often been tempted by electronic works. Violinist, composer, and Alarm Will Sound member Caleb Burhans, who cut his teeth arranging works by Aphex Twin for the group, adapted Adams' work. While Alarm Will Sound has performed this piece several times, we're proud to bring this you exclusive recording! 

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream — hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity — and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 21 2017

13mins

Play

Splitting Adams: John Adams' Chamber Symphonies

Podcast cover
Read more

What happens when the composer shows up to the first rehearsal of his brand-new piece? Would a living Beethoven sue for intellectual property? Are you the hit, or are you in the hole? For this episode, we collaborated with the 20-member chamber ensemble Alarm Will Sound and its conductor Alan Pierson – with whom we're partnering on the upcoming podcast album Splitting Adams (out April 21 on Cantaloupe Music) –  to take a close look at the music of John Adams, specifically his two insanely difficult chamber symphonies. This episode offers unprecedented access to not only to the creative process, but the weird, woolly procedure of putting these massive pieces together.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 20 2017

36mins

Play

Bonus Track: Pauline Oliveros' 'Tuning Meditation'

Podcast cover
Read more

Today's Bonus Track is an extended cut of Pauline Oliveros' "Tuning Meditation," recorded live at the Fuentidueña Chapel at the Met Cloisters on Jan. 20, 2017. Recorded in 3D-sounding binaural audio, it's an immersive experience in which we would love you to think about participating while listening. For optimal audio quality, please listen with headphones!

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream — hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity — and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 16 2017

24mins

Play

The Performer: Part Two, Pauline

Podcast cover
Read more

We continue our investigation of the odd, wrong-side-of-the-tv-set role of The Performer with a deep dive into the "Sonic Meditations" of pioneering American composer Pauline Oliveros. Pauline manages to smudge at the distinction between composer, performer and audience with these simple, text-based pieces, which somehow pack an emotional wallop far larger than their few lines might suggest. 

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 14 2017

33mins

Play

Bonus Track: JACK Quartet Performs Georg Friedrich Haas' String Quartet No. 9

Podcast cover
Read more

We are thrilled to bring you a WORLD PREMIERE recording as our first bonus track of Season Three!

Our previous episode, The Performer: Part One, featured, among other things, a fascinating conversation with the Austrian composer Georg Friedrich Haas. As we are a talk show about music, we are always dying to simply play some MUSIC, and so today we bring you our exclusive, world premiere recording of Haas’ 9th String Quartet. The whole thing! Featuring the fantastic JACK Quartet.

The JACK Quartet has spent years performing and championing an older piece of Haas’, his 3rd String Quartet. They played it so well, in fact, Haas decided to write his ninth quartet specifically for the JACKs, taking full advantage of their superpower: just intonation. So we figured, what could be better than having the JACKs over to Q2 Music to bring this piece to life?

Like his 3rd String Quartet, this piece comes with an unusual stipulation: it is to be performed in complete, india-ink, can’t-see-your-hand-in-front-of-your-face darkness. So turn out the lights and join Meet the Composer and the JACKs for the first-ever recording of this spectacular piece of oddly-tuned awesome.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposer
Like Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.org
Follow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2Music
Like Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 07 2017

51mins

Play

The Performer: Part One

Podcast cover
Read more

We're kicking off Season Three with a look beyond the composer to the performer, that unusual intermediary between the artist and the audience. How do performers from different cultures, who speak different languages, come together to perform the same piece? What happens when an ensemble completely messes up... and the audience loves it? How does a piece change when it’s played nonstop for twelve hours?

We explore these questions and more, taking a seat on stage as we find out what it’s like to experience music from the inside-out.  

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 06 2017

46mins

Play

From the Vaults, Part Five: Meet the Composer With Leonard Bernstein

Podcast cover
Read more

We conclude the week-long ramp-up to our next and third season with an interview with the legendary, charismatic Leonard Bernstein. Though mostly known for his work as a composer (West Side Story) and conductor (New York Philharmonic), Leonard Bernstein was also a consummate evangelist for classical music. This conversation focuses on Bernstein's efforts as a music educator and the role that education played for host Tim Page in his music criticism.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 03 2017

13mins

Play

From the Vaults, Part Four: Meet the Composer With Libby Larsen

Podcast cover
Read more

A blast from the past featuring the composer Libby Larsen. Larsen explains how living in Minneapolis facilitated her success as a composer, and how federal regulations in Title IX provided an uplift to women composers in the U.S. This week, we're revisiting interviews conducted in the 1980s by the influential music critic and educator Tim Page. His show, which aired from 1981 until 1992, was called Meet the Composer and featured some of the most towering musical figures of the previous century. Join us tomorrow for one more throwback episode, and stay tuned on Monday for the premiere of Meet the Composer's third season.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 02 2017

10mins

Play

From the Vaults, Part Three: Meet the Composer With Otto Luening

Podcast cover
Read more

Otto Luening was a forefather of experimental electronic music and a life-long educator, flutist and composer. In this 1985 interview with host Tim Page, from the original WNYC program called Meet the Composer, Luening tells the story of his first electronic experiments and wonders why audiences had found new interest in some of his earliest works. We also take a look at Alvin Lucier, another tape music maverick, as we prepare for the start of our new season on Monday.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Mar 01 2017

11mins

Play

From the Vaults, Part Two: Meet the Composer With John Cage

Podcast cover
Read more

We continue the week-long ramp-up to our next and third season with an interview with the widely influential patriarch of 20th-century experimental music John Cage. In this conversation with host Tim Page, Cage explains how his strenuous connection with music precipitated his experiments with silence, ambient noise and spirituality. Page offers his own straightforward critique of Cage's discoveries and reiterates the need for objectivity and seclusion in music criticism. 

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Feb 28 2017

12mins

Play

From the Vaults, Part One: Meet the Composer With Tim Page

Podcast cover
Read more

As we build up to the launch of our third season next Monday, we thought we'd look back at the original WNYC radio program Meet the Composer from the mid-'80s, hosted by the illustrious music critic Tim Page. We'll share excerpts of his interviews with some of the most exciting figures in contemporary music, but before that we wanted to check in with Tim himself, a man for whom music has been an enormous force in his life, in his career, and even for his psychological well-being. We ask him how he found his way into music criticism, where that first Meet the Composer radio program came from, and what role music has played in his recovery after a recent traumatic brain injury.

---

About the podcast:

Meet the Composer is a Peabody Award-winning podcast that takes listeners into the minds and creative processes of the composers making some of the most innovative, compelling, and breathtakingly beautiful music today.

Follow Meet the Composer on Twitter: @MeettheComposerLike Meet the Composer on Facebook: www.facebook.com/meetthecomposer

---

Q2 Music is WQXR, New York's multi-platform home for dynamic modern music. Discover countless new artists via our 24/7 music stream – hand-crafted daily to reward your curiosity – and surprise your imagination with a world of exhilarating new music.

Produced by Q2 Music. www.q2music.orgFollow Q2 Music on Twitter: @Q2MusicLike Q2 Music on Facebook: www.facebook.com/q2music

Feb 27 2017

11mins

Play

Kickstart Season Three of Meet the Composer

Podcast cover
Read more

Help us make a third season of the Peabody Award-winning podcast about the creative musical process, with host Nadia Sirota. Learn more about our ambitions for next season and help make Season Three a reality by backing our Kickstarter campaign today at www.q2music.org/kickstarter.

May 10 2016

3mins

Play

Download: 'Viola Concerto: Part II' by Nico Muhly

Podcast cover
Read more

I'm so excited to share today's Meet the Composer bonus track with you. Last October, I traveled to Detroit to perform the US premiere of Nico Muhly's viola concerto with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra under Maestro Leonard Slatkin. The orchestra has graciously agreed to let us use the second movement of the viola concerto for our show for three months, so this is our first ever LIMITED-TIME bonus track. 

Nico wrote the concerto in 2014, and in a lot of ways it's the fruit of 10 years of our working together. The piece is in three movements, and this movement, Part II, is sort of the emotional heart of the piece. It's soulful and colorful and I adore playing it. 

At the end of the movement the viola line suffers a sort of massive emotional breakdown, which is then answered by a huge orchestral explosion, featuring a giant tam-tam (gong) and all sorts of low-brass rumbles. In the aftermath, individual members of the orchestra play small phrases independently of each other, finally reuniting in a wounded coda. 

This is my favorite part of the concerto to play. 

Many, many thanks to the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Leonard Slatkin for making this bonus track possible!

Dec 28 2015

9mins

Play