Gradual Process: An Exploration of Minimalist and Postminimalist Music

College of Performing Arts: Mannes

Non-Liberal Arts
Undergraduate Course
Graduate Course
Majors Only
Exploration of Minimalism
Spring 2024
Taught By: Frank J. Oteri
Section: A

CRN: 14038

Credits: 2

This graduate seminar focuses on the development of minimalist music in the second half of the 20th century through to work that continues the ideas of minimalism and so-called postminimalism up to the present day. La Monte Young's Trio for Strings, originally composed in 1958 (but revised by the composer up until 2015), has often been called the “big bang” moment that gave birth to musical minimalism. Like all things in history, the reality is more complicated. We'll examine numerous antecedents for minimalism in Western classical music and other musical traditions from around the world as well as the work of several of Young's now mostly forgotten colleagues. We'll also analyze important works by Terry Riley, Steve Reich, and Philip Glass (the other three names usually associated with the founding of minimalism) as well as many other composers whose work has played a significant role in the development of this music both in the USA and abroad (e.g. David Borden, Meredith Monk, Julius Eastman, Pauline Oliveros, Eliane Radigue, Arvo Pärt, Henryk Górecki, Michael Nyman, Brian Eno, Somei Satoh, Ryuichi Sakamoto, and Midori Takada to name just a few). We'll then look at how composers like John Adams and the founders of Bang on a Can (Michael Gordon, Julia Wolfe, and David Lang) took some aspects of minimalism to create a much wider compositional language. Finally, we'll explore how minimalism has impacted rock and other genres of so-called popular music plus how it continues to inform the work of many younger composers today. The seminar, which will include independent reading and writing assignments in addition to work in class, is open to all Graduate Students as well as Juniors and Seniors with written permission. This course fulfills the Graduate Seminar requirement for Mannes MM students.

College: College of Performing Arts (CO)

Department: Mannes (MAN)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Modality: In-Person

Max Enrollment: 15

Add/Drop Deadline: February 4, 2024 (Sunday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 16, 2024 (Tuesday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every few minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 6:30pm EDT 6/13/2024

Meeting Info:
Days: Monday
Times: 10:00am - 11:40am
Building: Johnson/Kaplan 66 West 12th
Room: 501
Date Range: 1/22/2024 - 5/13/2024