Charles Amirkhanian Collection ➔ Composer-to-Composer Festival: Day 2 Discussions, Lou Harrison (August 17, 1988), 1 of 4

Digital Audio

Event Type
Lectures and Panel Discussions
C Amirkhanian
Program Series
Composer-to-Composer Festival
Program Length
418 min
1 of 4
| broadcast
| 1988-08-17 | created
A recording of the morning private discussion with Lou Harrison on August 17, 1988 during the Compser to Composer Festival in Telluride Colorado.

The session begins with some announcements by Charles Amirkhanian before introducing Lou Harrison. Harrison was the first composer to present that day, followed by Peter Sculthorpe, and Virko Baley.

Harrison talks about his partner Bill Colvig (also is the room) and his background and skills which led to him building instruments for and with Harrison. He moves on to discuss his work “La Koro Sutro” (Heart Sutra) and the translation process of the texts from Sanskrit and other languages to Esperanto, the final version in which it is sung. After a few technical difficulties, an excerpt of the piece is played.

After the excerpt other composers offer their impressions and ask questions about the composition. Harrison is also asked about his spiritual and secular concerns in life.

Harrison explains the tuning for “Scenes from Cavafy”, the next piece the group will hear. He also discusses the process about phrasing it and the story behind it based on works by the Greek poet Constantine Cavafy.

Terry Riley then answers whether he heard any similarities between the melodic pattern of the piece and how he is currently working with the Kronos Quartet.

Harrison then introduces the next piece, the Chaconne from his “Suite for Violin and American Gamelan” written with Richard Dee. Afterwards, the group reflects on the tuning of the piece before ending the session.
20th century classical
World music
Musical Selections
La Koro Sutro [excerpt] (1972) (6:35) -- Scenes from Cavafy [excerpt] (1980) (6:27) -- Chaconne [from Suite for Violin and American Gamelan] (1974) (5:13) / Lou Harrison
Chorus of the University of California at Berkeley (La Koro Sutro)
Philip Brett, conductor (La Koro Sutro)
David Rohrbaugh, baritone (Scenes from Cavafy)
Percussion music
Digitized with support from the National Recording Preservation Foundation, The Copland Fund, and the Association for Recorded Sound Collections.