Film and Tv
News - Riley's 80th Birthday in 2015
Martin B. Cherry
Friday, January 24, 2014
, one of America's most beloved minimalist composers, celebrates his 80th birthday in 2015. As one of the founders of the minimalist movement, Riley's hypnotic, multi-layered, polymetric, and brightly orchestrated Eastern-infused improvisations and compositions have influenced a large expanse of contemporary and popular music. His now-iconic work
(1964) pioneered a new form in Western music based upon structured interlocking repetitive patterns.
Known for compositions that embrace traditional ensemble forms as well as eclectic mixtures and unusual numbers of instruments, Riley's oeuvre spanning five prolific decades offers the opportunity for a variety of programming possibilities. Some notable works from his catalogue are:
Salome Dances for Peace
(1985-6), a two-hour cycle of five string quartets
Ritmos and Melos
(1993), a trio for violin, piano, and percussion
The Heaven Ladder Book 5
(1994), a four-hand piano work with folk influence
(1999), a sax quartet with 16 brief and memorable movements
(1995), solo works from
The Book of Abbeyozzud
(2001), for 28 guitars using the North Indian Raga Madhuvanti
(2007), triple concerto for two guitars and violin with the well-known last
movement "Sarabande to Iraq"
Halfwolf Dances Mad in Moonlight
(1985), for string orchestra
(1991), for solo string quartet and orchestra
(1998), for string orchestra and electronic percussion playback
The Palmian Chord Ryddle
(2011), for solo electric violin and orchestra
We encourage you to look through our full
catalogue of Riley's work
to plan upcoming concerts and festivals throughout 2015. We are always happy to advise on programming choices and promote any concerts that feature his music, so please feel free to reach out to our promotion department directly.
Riley's works have been premiered, commissioned, and recorded by many prominent groups and prominent musicians such as Kronos Quartet, Rova Saxophone Quartet, ARTE Quartet, Array Music, Zeitgeist, Steven Scott Bowed Piano Ensemble, John Zorn, Sarah Cahill, Zakir Hussain, Pauline Oliveros, California E.A.R. Unit, guitarist David Tanenbaum, electric violinist Tracy Silverman, drummer George Marsh, bassist Bill Douglass, jazz bassoonist Paul Hanson, the Assad brothers, cello octet Conjunto Ibérico, Crash Ensemble, Abel Steinberg-Winant Trio, pianists Werner Bartschi and Gloria Cheng, The Amstel Quartet, Calder Quartet, Alarm Will Sound, Arditti Quartet, Amati Quartet, Alter Ego, Sounds Bazaar, Paul Dresher, Adrian Utley, SO Percussion, singer Amelia Cuni, electronic duo Matmos, Bang-on-a-Can All Stars, and guitarist Gyan Riley. We hope you too will take part in this exciting celebration!
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