Minimalism, Part 2 of 4
After opening the door into the main hall of minimalism you pass through the Philip Glass room and then you next open the door to the Steve Reich room. Reich another of the great minimalist is lesser known than Glass, but he has an impressive body of works. Most popular was his Music for 18 Musicians.
I met Steve Reich briefly at Carnegie Hall. I was on my way to my seat in the audience and he was monkeying around with the sound board at the back of the audience. I walked back to say hello and to compliment his work. He was a gracious unassuming person and actually chatted with me for a few moments.
Reich's music is more of a percussive nature. He does employ other vocalists and musicians, but the pieces he writes for them is percussive in nature so even the violins and wind instruments are used percussively.
It is simply fascinating attending one of Reich's concerts. The stage usually has several grand pianos, six or eight marimbas, several drums and assorted other percussion instruments. The musicians walk on stage and start quietly, but within minutes they are all working their pieces in total concentration creating unforgettable sounds for their audience.
Here is a video of a promotional trailer for a CD that some students in Allendale Michigan made when they took on the momentous project of mastering Music for 18 Musicians. Having heard this piece performed live on several occasions I can say they really nailed it.