Help me get into modern music posted by Jonson
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For a long time, I held the same belief as far too many people, that all of the good classical music had already been written and that there was nothing of value in modern classical music. However, I have reversed my stance on this issue, and I am looking to find recommendations for composers, works, and recordings of more modern works (essentially the last 50 years, although not composers like shostakovich or copland who were writing in this time.) I prefer orchestral music, but I am open to other reccommendations. I am open to really any styles, whether in the vein more of Boulez or Rautavaara or whatever.
On October 7, 2016 Nicole Jonson wrote:
The good news is that you'll be able to find many works you like. Here is a partial list:
Gorecki - Symphony No. 3 "Symphony of Sorrowful Songs" (1975-6). Be sure you are in a quiet space for this. It is very tonal and easy to appreciate when you listen the first time. You can see this description here: Gorecki Symphony No. 3
Penderecki - Symphony No. 2. If all you know about Pendercki is his Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima, then you are missing out on his later style. His second symphony is neo-romantic, but with some older parts of his style thrown in. When I heard the premiere, I had just tuned in on NPR and missed the composer and title. At first, I thought that this was a romantic piece I had never heard, but was enjoying. Then I heard some glissandi that reminded me of Threnody. Penderecki - Symphony No. 2
Reich - Vermont Counterpoint (1982). If you like minimalist pieces, this is a good place to start. You can see this description here: Vermont Counterpoint - Boosey/Hawkes
Karel Husa - Music for Prague (1968). This is actually a band piece. In fact, quite a lot of good music is composed for concert band/wind ensemble these days. Music for Prague
Speaking of band:
Alfred Reed - Russian Christmas Music (1944. Yeah, I know it's outside of your 50-years parameter). If you go to just about any band's Christmas concert, the odds are high that you will hear this - it's that good. As you probably know, many piano works are arranged for symphony orchestra (Mussorgsky - Pictures at an Exhibition and others). Band people are acquainted with the many orchestral compositions that are transcribed/arranged for band. It's rare that it happens the other way (band -> orchestra). This is one of them. Russian Christmas Music
H. Owen Reed - La Fiesta Mexicana (1949). This is a three movement piece. See La Fiesta Mex
This should be a good start. I wish you well.
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