Dinner with a Genius

Vladan Radovanovic: Arms (1992)One of the coolest things that happened to me in Belgrade was that my musicologist friend Dragana Stojanovic-Novicic secured me an introduction to Vladan Radovanovic. Born in 1932, Radovanovic founded Yugoslavia's first electronic music studio in Belgrade in 1972, and ran it until 1999. He first came to my attention as a supposed precursor of minimalism for some austere works he wrote in the '50s, but that turns out to be the least of his achievements. He refers to his work as "Art Synthesis," and besides being a … [Read more...]

Ending Up at Huntsville at Last

This week, April 15-17, I am the featured composer at the annual new-music festival at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. There appear to be six concerts, with my music on four of them, mixed with works by student composers there; click on the link to see the official site. I give a talk Friday morning at 11. I love looking at the list of composers from previous festivals: Peter Mennin in '62, my one-time teacher Kent Kennan in '63, Persichetti in '64, Sandor Varess in '65, Paul Creston in '71, Ben Johnston in '72, Elie … [Read more...]

Redeeming Juvenilia

[Back from Serbia after a 24-hour door-to-door trip in which my plane made an unscheduled stop in Canada because a woman passenger had a seizure and needed medical attention. It was a classic "Is there a doctor on the plane?" situation out of a movie I don't want to see again.]One minor note about the video that accompanies Frank Oteri's interview with me at New Music Box: The video is framed by passages (and even the score) of my first microtonal piece, Superparticular Woman, from 1992. This is one of those pieces I never play for anyone, … [Read more...]

Every 29 Years, Saturn

BELGRADE - Saturn is sextiling my Sun and ascendant from my tenth house, if you know what that means. What it means is, I'm kind of difficult to escape at the moment. The always impressive Frank Oteri has a wonderful interview up with me today on New Music Box, in honor of my new book and two recent CDs. I always knew Frank was sort of ridiculously brilliant, but I didn't realize how brilliant until he started digging into my music and making me see it from a different angle than I'd ever seen it before. In addition there's another interview … [Read more...]

Anyone in Serbia?

I don't know who might be reading this blog in Belgrade, but in case anyone is, I'll be speaking about my music (and its relation to American precedents) tonight from 6 to 8 at the University for the Arts in Belgrade.  … [Read more...]