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Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Violin and Percussion

Sun, February 7, 2021

Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Violin and Percussion

In this online streamed concert, PostClassical Ensemble musicians, reunited for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic, play Lou Harrison’s Concerto for Violin and Percussion, which may well be the most formidable ever composed by an American.

Lou Harrison –the master American composer whom PCE has championed since 2011– espoused “world music” before there was a name for it. His profound knowledge of non-Western idioms –in particular, of Indonesian gamelan– made him the master musical practitioner of cultural fusion.

The Harrison Violin Concerto may well be the most formidable ever composed by an American. The “orchestra” includes wash tubs, coffee cans, flower pots, and other “junk percussion” that Harrison discovered rummaging with his San Francisco colleague John Cage.


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