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Three Voices For Joan La Barbara
Morton Feldman
Three Voices For Joan La Barbara
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Classical
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1

Three Voices For Joan La Barbara by Morton Feldman


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CD Details

All Artists: Morton Feldman
Title: Three Voices For Joan La Barbara
Members Wishing: 3
Total Copies: 0
Label: New Albion Records
Release Date: 11/18/2009
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Classical
Styles: Vocal Pop, Historical Periods, Modern, 20th, & 21st Century
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 022551001824


Album Description
Three Voices For Joan La Barbara by Morton Feldman

CD Reviews

Lost in a Blizzard
N. Andrew Walsh | 11/08/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)

"When I first heard this, I was a Teaching Assistant for a lower-division course on contemporary music. This piece was the material of the midterm exam. The effect of hearing one person singing three parts is very meditative, and becomes almost overwhelming by the end. The constantly shifting (but never greatly varying) texture of the part creates a very distinct image of light, whirling snow. When La Barbara suddenly comes in with WORDS, more than 20 minutes into the piece, the effect is very startling. Likewise, when - after more than 50 minutes - she suddenly STOPS, with no warning, it's extremely powerful. Feldman only set a small excerpt of the poem, focusing on the single image of falling snow, rather than setting the later parts of the text, which drift off into topics of evil, childhood, and other more weighty topics. By keeping to this single image, he expands the field of perception almost to the limits. The only reason i'm giving this only 4 stars has nothing to do with the quality of the performance. La Barbara is a definitive performer of this piece, after all. But in the originial version, it's much slower, and the piece consequently takes almost 1-1/2 hours. La Barbara initially refused to perform it at that tempo, arguing (rightly so) that it would be virtually impossible to sing even ONE line for 90 minutes, let alone three. She DID eventually work up to it, and gave a performance at the original tempo once or twice in New York. Every effect of meditativeness and suddenness in the 40-minute version is even more intense when the piece is almost twice as long, and for that reason i wish the publishers would release a version at the original length. Perhaps with DVD technology it would even be possible to put it on a single disc, since having to stop midway to change CDs would of course disrupt the experience. But i hope that someday technical limitations of performer and medium might be surmounted, and we might hear this fascinating piece as it was intended."
Don't Start Here with Feldman
Christopher Forbes | Brooklyn,, NY | 07/30/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This is a lovely piece. It is meditative and subtle in ways that Phillip Glass never is. But unless you already know Feldman, this is not the work to start with. It is not representative of most of his music, rather it is an interesting sideline. Written for Joan La Barbara, the work is scored for one singer and two taped singers and sets a fragment of a poem by Frank O'Hara. Feldman plays with sound for almost twenty minutes into the piece before you start to hear the words. The effect is often like some of Steve Reich's early tape pieces, except with less driving motion. When the words come in, the effect is stunning. My reason for concern is that many people will assume, based on this piece, that Feldman is a minimalist. He is, but not in a stereotypical way. His music is fascinating and minimal, but not in the tonal, repetitive way of Reich or Glass. Rather, he is minimalist, as later Cage is minimalist, but with much more concern for sonic beauty than Cage shows. So yes, get this CD. But also get Rothko Chapel or For Phillip Gunston. Without this music, you just scratch the surface of this fascinating modern composer."