Thursday, September 8, 2011

6 Classical Pieces to Commemorate 9/11 - #4 WTC 9/11 by Steve Reich

Today, I have something that will either be exciting or horrifying to your ears.

WTC 9/11
By Steve Reich

How it was influenced by September 11:  The piece itself is a short (15 minute long) "speech melody" in three movements - 9/11, 2010, and WTC.  The Pulitzer Prize winning composer, Steve Reich, who is one of the world's most influential living composers, took sounds from that day and audio recordings from interviews, NORAD air-traffic controllers, and firefighters using the pitch of their voices to create a musical world that describes the images that they are speaking about.  The Kronos Quartet, one of the world's greatest string quartets, accompanies the spoken parts to pitch.

What to listen for: The string quartet.  Reich is a tough composer for those who have never heard his music before.  He breaks parts down into small segments and pieces them back together.  When people speak in this piece, the strings play what they are speaking on pitch, then elaborate on it.  So, if someone is talking about people falling from a building, the strings will use the pitches of the speaker's voice describing it, and create a falling theme following their description, etc.  By the end of the piece you will know exactly what I am talking about, so it may take a couple listens to fully understand the piece.

With that said, this has already received tremendous acclaim, and will certainly be a heavy contender for the Pulitzer Prize next year.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN - THIS PLAYS THE ENTIRE CD, WTC 9/11 IS ONLY THE FIRST 15 MINUTES OF THE CD

Tomorrow, I'll have something easier for your ears.  We're getting down to the top 3!  They are all incredible!

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