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Rank #66 in Music Commentary category

Arts
Music
Performing Arts
Music Commentary

Meet the Composer

Updated 6 days ago

Rank #66 in Music Commentary category

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

191 Ratings
Average Ratings
171
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

191 Ratings
Average Ratings
171
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.
Cover image of Meet the Composer

Meet the Composer

Updated 6 days ago

Rank #66 in Music Commentary category

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.

Rank #1: Nico Muhly: Community Theater

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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
1 hour 2 mins
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Rank #2: Caroline Shaw Lives Life Beautifully

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Caroline Shaw began her love affair with music at the age of two, when her mom started teaching her violin. Throughout her childhood, Caroline had a lesson every Wednesday afternoon, and sang and played in school and at music camps, falling for chamber music by Mozart and Clara Schumann. Caroline always made things; when she was bowled over by a Brahms sonata, she'd try and figure out how to construct her own sonatas. As a young adult, she continued on a rigorous, violin-centric path, earning both undergrad and masters degrees in violin performance from Rice University and the the Yale School of Music.

Sep 30 2014
58 mins
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Rank #3: Anna Thorvaldsdottir: Composing Is Second Nature

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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
55 mins
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Rank #4: Splitting Adams: John Adams' Chamber Symphonies

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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.

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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

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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
36 mins
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Rank #5: Meredith Monk: Creation as Spiritual Practice

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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
1 hour 7 mins
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Rank #6: The Performer: Part One

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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.  

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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

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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
46 mins
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Rank #7: Download: 'Viola Concerto: Part II' by Nico Muhly

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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
9 mins
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Rank #8: Andrew Norman: Better Living Through Architecture

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Andrew Norman was a well-feted kid composer, a precocious pre-adolescent who wrote works with grand, filmic gestures for his middle school orchestra and had the local newspapers filling their style sections with profiles invoking Mozart. Then he went to college.

All of a sudden, Norman's musical world exponentially widened; he was exposed to styles and practices so far outside of his previous experience that he stopped composing altogether. How could he write what he had been writing in a world rich with Lachenmanns, Xenakises and Carters, who were manipulating, torquing and stifling sound to create a whole different world of music? Norman almost left music entirely for architecture, but in flirting with this other career, he actually found his way back to composition, ultimately birthing a style that stunningly weds texture and drama in a unique and wonderful way.

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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

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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

Jul 29 2014
56 mins
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Rank #9: Kaija Saariaho: Ears Open

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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
1 hour 3 mins
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Rank #10: Download: Anna Thorvaldsdottir's 'Scape' Performed by Pianist Cory Smythe

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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
11 mins
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Rank #11: Donnacha Dennehy: Composing With Frequency

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Donnacha Dennehy is an Irish composer who thought he was going to study with spectral icon Gérard Grisey in Paris. When he showed up, however, it was apparent that Grisey had accepted him into his study under the mistaken notion that he was not, in fact, a gentleman but a lady.

A bit put off by Grisey's visible disappointment with his gender, as well as the strikingly uninteresting uniformity in the style of his students work, Donnacha headed to Amsterdam, where he met Louis Andriessen, who changed his life. Donnacha's music fuses the old (sean-nós and other Irish styles) and the new (just intonation, pulse-based textures) to create something all his own. It's a music that is at once satisfying and supremely strange.

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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

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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

Aug 26 2014
52 mins
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Rank #12: Henry Threadgill: Dirt, and More Dirt

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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.

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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
41 mins
Play

Rank #13: Ingram Marshall: A Connecticut Hippie In California

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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.

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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
1 hour 7 mins
Play

Rank #14: The Performer: Part Two, Pauline

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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. 

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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
33 mins
Play

Rank #15: Marcos Balter: Failure Is an Option

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For Marcos Balter, stellar composition requires the dedicated, daily practice of an athlete. He doesn't think it possible to unearth and hone brilliant musical ideas without slogging through a whole bunch of failures along the way, nor does he believe that the compositional demigods we revere so highly – Bach, Beethoven, Mozart – birthed only masterpieces. He worries too many creatives get tongue-tied attempting consistent genius, and that their work suffers for it. Marcos has learned to embrace failure, and that these failures can lead to incredible breakthroughs.

Oct 30 2014
1 hour 4 mins
Play

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