Personalities | Milton Babbitt | Modern Era | Classical

American composer

An enthusiastic exponent of modernism, Babbitt is an influential teacher. In a famous essay, ‘Who cares if you listen?’, he argued that modern composers should not address the mass concert audience but, like scientists communicating research to their fellows, a specialist, almost private one. Strongly influenced by Schoenberg and Webern, he extended their principles of organization to areas other than pitch. His works are abstract and complex, but not without drama, wit (All Set, for jazz octet) or lyricism (Philomel, for soprano and electronic tape).

Recommended Recording:
All Set, Composition for 12 Instruments, etc., Boston Modern Orchestra Project (cond) Gil Rose (BMOP/sound)

Introduction | Modern Era | Classical
Personalities | Grazyna Bacewicz | Modern Era | Classical


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