One of the first composers to meld the sounds of the Western and Eastern classical music traditions, Philip Glass is largely responsible for creating the Minimalist movement in music. His unique sound developed over a long span of time -- time... [more]
One of the first composers to meld the sounds of the Western and Eastern classical music traditions, Philip Glass is largely responsible for creating the Minimalist movement in music. His unique sound developed over a long span of time -- time in which Glass decided that he was not satisfied with Western music as a means of expression, and traveled all around the world in an effort to find a better sound.
Having studied music as a child, he approached composition seriously at the age of 19, when he enrolled at the Juilliard School of Music. He had already experimented on his own with atonal music in a style similar to Schoenberg's; at Juilliard he explored other types of Western music, both classical and modern.
By his mid-20s, Glass was frustrated not only with his own compositions' lack of expressiveness, but with the entire Western musical framework. He looked toward Indian, African, and Middle Eastern musical traditions to provide some sort of inspiration, and immersed himself in the music of different countries over three years of world travel.
When he returned to the United States, he was well on his way toward the fusion of Eastern and Western traditions that formed the basis of his style. He founded his own ensemble of mainly electronic- and wind-instrument musicians to perform the new music. As Glass gained renown, musical celebrities like David Byrne collaborated with him on new projects. Glass' best-known work extends beyond the bounds of music to involve theater and visual art.
His modern opera "Einstein on the Beach" and his score for the film "Koyaanisqatsi" exemplify the scope of his artistic vision, which encompasses outer space and the whole of planet earth with all its multifarious cultures. His most recent work, "Monsters of Grace," combines visuals with live music in a critically acclaimed experiment with mixed media. [show less]
The Kitchen is a non-profit, interdisciplinary organization the provides exhibition and performance opportunities to innovative artists in media, literacy and performing arts. The Kitchen... / read more