Steve Reich

Music for 18 Musicians + Double Sextet

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The minimalist music style has had a profound influence on all Western music. Not only has classical music been challenged and changed, but electronica, jazz, hip-hop, and pop have fallen under its influence, as well. Starting in the 1960s as an alternative to the "joyless" classical music coming out of academia, its pulsing rhythms, shifting patterns, focused harmonies, and mesmerizing repetitions, which move continuously through metamorphoses, spoke to listeners in a new way. Music for 18 Musicians, by Steve Reich and musicians, premiered in 1974 at The Town Hall in New York City.

In 2009, Reich won a Pulitzer Prize for his piece Double Sextet, where two identical groups of six musicians each play interlocking patterns of music—and the interwoven rhythms and phrases draw listeners into a maelstrom of pulsing music.

Signal, under Brad Lubman, performs these minimalist masterpieces with absolute virtuosity.

Micah Silver

Steve Reich has embraced not only aspects of Western classical music, but also the structures, harmonies, and rhythms of non-Western music. Reich graduated from Cornell University in 1957 with a degree in philosophy. He studied composition with Hall Overton, and at The Juilliard School and Mills College. In 1966, he founded a three-musician ensemble, which grew to 18 members. Reich was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1994, to the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts in 1995, and in 1999, he was awarded Commandeur de l’ordre des Arts et Lettres. His music has been performed by major orchestras and ensembles around the world, including the London Symphony Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the San Francisco Symphony, the Ensemble Modern, the London Sinfonietta, and many others. Several noted choreographers have created dances to Reich’s music, including Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker, Jerome Robbins, Laura Dean, and Alvin Ailey.

Conductor and composer Brad Lubman has enjoyed a multi-faceted career. Formerly assistant conductor to Oliver Knussen at the Tanglewood Music Center, he has emerged as an unusually versatile conductor of orchestras and ensembles all over the world. He has worked with a variety of illustrious musical figures including Pierre Boulez, Luciano Berio, Steve Reich, Michael Tilson Thomas, and John Zorn.

Signal is a large music ensemble comprising gifted and innovative New York-based musicians devoted to presenting a broad range of new music with energy, passion, and virtuosity. The ensemble performs under the musical direction of Brad Lubman. The group has appeared at the Bang on a Can Marathon, the Ojai Music Festival, and Le Poisson Rouge in New York City. In 2010, Signal was the visiting resident ensemble at the University of Buffalo. The ensemble currently is in recording residence at EMPAC.

Steve Reich
Concert Hall
March 12, 2011, 8PM

EMPAC 2010-2011 presentations, residencies, and commissions are supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts (with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation; additional funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Community Connections Fund of the MetLife Foundation, and the Boeing Company Charitable Trust), and the New York State Council for the Arts. Special thanks to the Jaffe Fund for Experimental Media and Performing Arts for support of artist commissions.

Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation
National Endowment for the Arts
NEFA - New England Foundation for the Arts
State of the Arts - NYSCA