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Performance Practice in the Music of Steve Reich


Part of Music since 1900

Steve Reich
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  • Date Published: October 2016
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107151505

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About the Authors
  • Performance Practice in the Music of Steve Reich provides a performer's perspective on Steve Reich's compositions from his iconic minimalist work, Drumming, to his masterpiece, Music for 18 Musicians. It addresses performance issues encountered by the musicians in Reich's original ensemble and the techniques they developed to bring his compositions to life. Drawing comparisons with West African drumming and other non-Western music, the book highlights ideas that are helpful in the understanding and performance of rhythm in all pulse-based music. Through conversations and interviews with the author, Reich discusses his percussion background and his thoughts about rhythm in relation to the music of Ghana, Bali, India, and jazz. He explains how he used rhythm in his early compositions, the time feel he wants in his music, the kind of performer who seems to be drawn to his music, and the way perceptual and metrical ambiguity create interest in repetitive music.

    • Provides a unique perspective on the music of a composer who is considered one of the greatest of his generation
    • Includes personal conversations and in-depth interviews with Steve Reich regarding his views on rhythm and his performance practice
    • Illustrates Reich's intent to create pulse-based music with rhythm, percussion instruments, and a percussive approach to performance as a basis for composition
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This excellent book celebrates composer Steve Reich with an 80th birthday gift of publication. … This reviewer gives an A+ to the publisher and author for offering this fine book on the subject. … this volume gives a welcome and expert guide to the subject. … highly recommended.' Geary Larrick, Nacwpi Journal

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2016
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107151505
    • length: 288 pages
    • dimensions: 252 x 180 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.74kg
    • contains: 25 b/w illus. 102 music examples
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Foreword Steve Reich
    Introduction, 1. Drumming, early days
    2. Percussion and Drumming
    3. The process of composing Drumming
    4. Drumming, Part I
    5. Drumming, Part II
    6. Drumming, Part III
    7. Drumming, Part IV
    8. Acoustics of Drumming
    9. Anatomy of a phase
    10. Performance practice in Drumming
    11. Clapping Music
    12. Music for Pieces of Wood
    13. Six Pianos
    14. Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices, and Organ
    15. Music for 18 Musicians
    16. Inside rhythm.

  • Author

    Russell Hartenberger, University of Toronto
    Russell Hartenberger, Professor at the University of Toronto, has been a member of both Nexus and Steve Reich and Musicians since 1971. With Nexus, he created the sound track for the Academy Award winning Full Length Documentary, The Man Who Skied Down Everest. With Steve Reich and Musicians he has recorded for ECM, DGG and Nonesuch Records, and performed on the Grammy Award winning recording of Music for 18 Musicians. His awards include the Toronto Arts Award, the Banff Centre for the Arts National Award, a Juno nomination, and induction into the Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame.


    Steve Reich

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