Philip Glass

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Philip Glass
Philip Morris Glass
BirthplaceBaltimore, Maryland, United States

Glass, Philip,

1937–, American composer, b. Baltimore. Considered one of the most innovative of contemporary composers, he was a significant figure in the development of minimalismminimalism,
schools of contemporary art and music, with their origins in the 1960s, that have emphasized simplicity and objectivity. Minimalism in the Visual Arts
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 in music. Glass attended the Univ. of Chicago, Juilliard (M.A., 1962) and studied (1964–66) with Nadia BoulangerBoulanger, Nadia
, 1887–1979, French conductor and musician, b. Paris. Boulanger was considered an outstanding teacher of composition. She studied at the Paris Conservatory, where in 1945 she became professor.
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 in Paris. There he also met Indian musicians Ravi ShankarShankar, Ravi
(Robindra Shankar Chowdhury), 1920–2012, Indian sitarist and composer, b. Varanasi. He was the first Indian instrumentalist to attain an international reputation and is credited with introducing traditional Indian music to the West.
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 and Alla Rakha, whose music was to influence his own compositions strongly. In 1968 he formed the Philip Glass Ensemble, a small group that employs electronically amplified instruments. During the 1970s he became known for music that blended standard notation and tonality with electronics. These lengthy and highly rhythmic compositions employ a number of phrases that are repeated and slowly modified during the music's course. The purest form of this style is represented in the four-hour-long Music in 12 Parts (1971–74).

More traditional harmonies entered his music with the opera Einstein on the Beach (1976), a work written with Robert WilsonWilson, Robert,
1941–, dramatist, director, and designer, b. Waco, Tex. He began his arts career as a painter. A leading figure in postmodern theater since 1963, when he arrived in New York City, he has created lengthy, often controversial multimedia events that combine
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 that introduced the minimalist style to a mass audience and paved the way for a wider acceptance of contemporary opera. The meditative Einstein is without narrative plot and blends light, image, and sound as well as dance, words, and music into a hypnotic whole. Glass's work since has become more complex and varied. His more than two dozen operas have become his best-known compositions; Satyagraha (1980), Akhnaten (1984), The Fall of the House of Usher (1988), Hydrogen Jukebox (1990, a collaboration with Allen GinsbergGinsberg, Allen
, 1926–97, American poet, b. Paterson, N.J., grad. Columbia, 1949. An outspoken member of the beat generation, Ginsberg is best known for Howl (1956), a long poem attacking American values in the 1950s.
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), The Voyage (1992), and La Belle et la Bête (1994, composed for CocteauCocteau, Jean
, 1889–1963, French writer, visual artist, and filmmaker. He experimented audaciously in almost every artistic medium, becoming a leader of the French avant-garde in the 1920s.
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's film) followed Einstein. Three more had their American debuts in 2001—The Marriages between Zones 3, 4 and 5 (1997); the epic White Raven (1998), another collaboration with Wilson; and the smaller-scale In the Penal Colony (2001), based on KafkaKafka, Franz
, 1883–1924, German-language novelist, b. Prague. Along with Joyce, Kafka is perhaps the most influential of 20th-century writers. From a middle-class Jewish family from Bohemia, he spent most of his life in Prague.
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's short story. Later operas are Galileo Galilei (2002); Waiting for the Barbarians (2005), based on a CoetzeeCoetzee, J. M.
(John Maxwell Coetzee) , 1940–, South African novelist, b. John Michael Coetzee. Educated at the Univ. of Cape Town (M.A. 1963) and the Univ. of Texas (Ph.D.
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 novel; Appomattox (2007, rev. 2015 to reflect contemporary challenges to civil and voter rights); Kepler (2009); and The Perfect American (2013), a surreal portrait of Walt DisneyDisney, Walt
(Walter Elias Disney) , 1901–66, American movie producer and pioneer in animated cartoons, b. Chicago. He grew up in Missouri, in the small town of Marceline and in Kansas City.
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 during his final days. Glass's other compositions include symphonies, concertos, string quartets, songs, and film scores, e.g., the harmonically lush music for Koyaanisqatsi (1982), and scores for films by such directors as Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, and Errol Morris. Glass's work has been extremely influential in the development of a new generation of composers.


See his Music by Philip Glass (1987) and his memoir Words without Music (2015); R. Kostelanetz, ed., Writings on Glass (1997); Philip Glass: Looking Glass (documentary, 2005).

Glass, Philip

(1937–  ) composer; born in Baltimore, Md. After composition studies at Juilliard, Glass went to Paris in 1964 to study with Nadia Boulanger and later spent time in India studying that culture's traditions. Back in New York in the late 1960s, he organized a group to play his stripped-down, relentlessly repetitive music that was dubbed (along with that of Steve Reich and others) "minimalist." With works including his opera Einstein on the Beach (1976), Glass gained a large following, many from the ranks of rock fans.
References in periodicals archive ?
Opticity offered a sensible solution that met all of our needs, making this an easy decision for us," said Phillip Glass, General Manager of all three properties.
Modernists can look forward to the Basel Symphony Orchestra on April 23 playing Arvo Part, Phillip Glass and the relentless thumping of John Adams.
We are sometimes compared to instrumentation of various Icelandic bands, or the minimalism of people like Phillip Glass.
I Gaer mixed the repetitive, percussive harmonics of Phillip Glass with explosive post-rock noise, resulting in a howling, mournful racket, while Ny Batteri saw Birgisson playing solo, his bow drawing textures and atmospheres out that flitted between fragile and oppressive and back again.
Under blue skies on a warm Southern California morning, a family friend read messages from political and cultural luminaries including musicians Phillip Glass and Peter Gabriel, who thanked him for teaching them.
Think Phillip Glass, Brian Eno and Steve Reich and you might be half way to understanding Penguin Cafe's exuberant mix of ambient folk and jazz.
A wooden sign with yellow lettering leads to a lush, tree-lined outdoor performance space that has hosted the likes of Patti Smith, Arcade Fire and Phillip Glass.
like Paul Simon at his abstract best, with a bit of Phillip Glass thrown in.
A report in the weekly newspaper on the launch party for Rushdie's latest, Luka and the Fire of Life , at New York's Bowery hotel, read: " There was a Bono for every Orhan Pamuk, and an Isabella Rossellini for every Phillip Glass.
2, Moeran's String Quartet no 1 in A Minor, Beethoven's String Quartet no11 in F minor, op 95 (Serioso) and String Quartet no 2 Company by Phillip Glass.
Three days in Range Creek, and Rice has documented one night, two dawns, eight wild turkeys and hundreds of cicadas, hidden one late afternoon inside a row of sun-lit box elders, the unrelenting tssssss suggesting the rhythmic intensity of a Phillip Glass score.
The last dance was choreographed by Rita Honka with music by Phillip Glass.