Saturday, September 20, 2014

Minimalists Steve Reich and Philip Glass at the Next Wave Festival

A prolific concert in and of itself, master minimalists Steve Reich and Philip Glass shared the stage for the first time in over 30 years to pay homage to Nonesuch Records’ 50th anniversary. Hosted by Brooklyn Academy of Music since 1981 is the Next Wave Festival, a festival that is dedicated to modern music.

Steve Reich and Philip Glass marked the opening night of the festival. The two minimalistic composers hadn’t shared a concert bill together in over 30 years let alone perform together due to a speculated disagreement.  The journalist of this article made a note that this concert left an emotional mark on Steve Reich, not concerning his reunion with Glass, but of the other performers. During this three-day concert series, Reich and Glass were joined by musicians that had been playing with Reich since the 70’s, as well as composer-performers Timo Andres and Nico Muhly, and percussionist David Cossin. David Cossin had studied under the late James Preiss, an original member of Reich’s group that passed away almost a year ago.

The program included Reich's Four Organs, a piece known for its complexity. There was no sign of true friendship between Reich and Glass after the performance was over. The journalist had said that if anything, they still seemed very tense and reserved with an accompanying sense of coldness.  It seems as though the reunion between Reich and Glass was not everything that the audience had hoped for, but the collaboration on Music for 18 Musicians with Reich, many of his original musicians, and his welcomed younger generation of performers exuded a feeling of comradery and happiness.

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