Wednesday, July 09, 2008

The Inner Life of the Piano

A couple of months ago I heard a recording of Stephen Scott's music for bowed piano for the first time. It's absolutely astonishing stuff, taking off from a '70s Steve Reich kind of minimalism and drawing these otherworldly washes of harmony out of the instrument. There's a Morning Edition feature from last February that's worth checking out (don't miss the film excerpt, especially), and you can watch a mesmerizing video of a ten-minute piece called "Entrada" online too:

For the intrigued, a long, detailed interview with the composer from '05 is at NewMusicBox.

Scott is a professor at Colorado College, where he leads the ten-piece student bowed piano ensemble that he's run for three decades. They tour, apparently, though I'm not sure when next. The new-music label New Albion has recorded most of his work and has several discs out.


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