Minimalism, My Miniskirt, and I
What: Philip Glass Violin Concerto No. 1
Bruckner Orchester Linz/Dennis Russell Davies, Conductor/Renaud Capuçon, violin
Where: Avery Fisher Hall
Wore: Bandage mini-skirt, eggplant v-neck tank, ankle boots, leather jacket, and tights (to keep it proper)
Interesting Fact: Got ‘booed’ back in 1987 (I was probably too busy watching ‘Jem and the Holograms’ to notice)
Feelings/Thoughts: Enjoyed immensely.
Why such an aversion (to say the least) to Glass by many classical music aficionados? Some people really HATE Philip Glass, with a passion. Whoever thought arpeggios could cause such a stir? I don’t hate on Missoni or Pucci for having a signature style.
Unless one really knows Glass’s works really well, most would not be able to readily distinguish one piece from another (I wouldn’t, beyond solo vs. chamber vs. concerto, etc.) because there are so many similarities. Lots of simple arpeggios, major, minor, 7ths, nothing un-analyzable. This is why his music has oftentimes been disregarded as having any sort of musical value: it is accessible, unpretentious, straightforward. However, even those who hate his music the most can probably instantly recognize Glass in 5 seconds (or less). Regardless of how one feels about the fact that, yes, Glass is repetitive (and not just within a piece of music but across his body of work as a whole) it’s undeniable that he’s done something original, created his own musical identity that no one else can claim, and that alone is deserving of respect.