Thursday, March 13, 2003


Back on 26 February NFE previewed the exciting Warp Works and C20th Masters concert at the RFH on 9 March 2003. There is a good review of the proceedings at the New York Times (you have to register to get through). A few snippets from John Pareles on 12 March:

“The program made the clear if tacit point that ideas anticipate technology. Composers using mechanical processes presaged the loops and repetitions of computerized dance music, and composers fascinated by untempered, nonorchestral sounds foreshadowed the textural variety and obsessiveness of electronica.

“Video … accompanied some live pieces, including … Ligeti's 'Poeme Symphonique for 100 Metronomes,' with individual lines twitching for each ticking metronome.

“The concert was not some misguided attempt to elevate electronica into concert music; it was an appreciation. And for an audience weaned on electronica, all of the concert's dissonances, flickering patterns, sonic apparitions and jolts of rhythm made perfect sense, whether they came from Mr. Ligeti or Aphex Twin.”

The London concert has also excited some lively responses on

Composer David Horne wrote:

"The whole concert was an awesome experience for me, personally, I must admit. To see a packed RFH with a mostly under-30s crowd is extremely unusual for contemporary classical music -- certainly I've never experienced it. And while most of the audience was definitely coming from the Warp perspective, I felt there was on the whole a real enthusiasm for the Ligeti, Cage, Stockhausen etc. Also, while some may turn up their nose at the thought, I thought that the enthusiastic applause and whistles between the movements of the Ligeti were wonderful!

"Also very refreshing in my opinion was to hear people bubbling with comments about the whole event in the 'intermission' (there were still videos going on then.) There were real conversations and arguments going on, but all of it with enthusiasm, whether pro or con. I can't say I usually experience that, unfortunately. I daresay I can't expect to have concertgoers walking down the aisle with beers during my upcoming premieres either!"

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