Pulitzer Prize-Winning Composer Will Perform at Baylor March 1-2

Feb. 25, 2011

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The 2009 Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steve Reich will visit Baylor to discuss his Jewish faith and perform in concert March 1-2. Reich has been described by The New York Times as "our greatest living composer."

The event, "Reich at 75," will celebrate his upcoming 75th birthday and is a collaborative effort between the School of Music and the Center for Jewish Studies.

"This event has an intentional focus on Reich's Jewish faith and how it relates to his musical and artistic output," said Todd Meehan, a professor of percussion for the School of Music. "For many in our community, this may be their only opportunity to see a composer of this stature in person. It will literally be a once in a lifetime event."

Reich will present two lectures on Tuesday, March 1. "Different Trains: Music and the Holocaust" is at 11 a.m., and "Faith and Music: Steve Reich's Tehillim" is at 3:30 p.m. Both lectures are in Heschel Room 131 in Marrs McLean Science Building on the Baylor campus.

Reich's Jewish faith influenced his music in the 1980s. His Grammy Award-winning, semi-autobiographical piece "Different Trains" takes on a darker tone and discusses how divergent his childhood was from those of the Holocaust children.

Reservations must be made in advance. Contact Meehan at Todd_Meehan@baylor.edu to reserve a seat.

Reich also will speak on "Reich at 75: The Music of Steve Reich" at 9:45 a.m. Wednesday, March 2, in Jones Concert Hall in Glennis McCrary Music Building on the Baylor campus.

A composer Q&A session will follow at 1 p.m. in Room 118 of Sternberg Hall inside the McCrary Music Building. Reich then will perform percussion music at 7:30 p.m. in Jones Concert Hall with the Baylor Percussion Group.

"This is an incredible opportunity for our students to work with and perform for one of the best in the business," Meehan said. "The students have worked incredibly hard and have put together a tremendous evening of music. We're very fortunate to be the first university ensemble in the world to perform Reich's newest percussion work, entitled Mallet Quartet."

Reich is a pioneer of minimalist music. His use of repetitive figures and slow harmonic rhythm has significantly influenced contemporary music, leading to global tours and a Pulitzer Prize.

All events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.reichatbaylor.tumblr.com or contact Meehan at Todd_Meehan@baylor.edu.

Marrs McLean Science Building is at 1214 S. Fourth St.

Glennis McCrary Music Building is at 110 Baylor Ave.

by Susie Typher, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805

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