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‘Tis a Season of Birthdays

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Some of Our Favorite New York-Performances of Steve Reich's Music

To close off the re-airing of our week-long Maximum Reich festival in celebration of Steve Reich’s 75th birthday (and the 2nd birthday of Q2 Music), this Sunday at 2 p.m., Cued Up is raising the champagne glass to some of the composer's most compelling and blissful chamber music.

Still manifesting itself in every walk of musical expression, Reich's reach isn't the neatest of spills. Not a trickle down, or a trickle up, but a kind of omnipotent bleeding into everything from the music of 90's and 2000's TV commercials, to sound worlds coming from warriors of the musical underground.

Aside from the opening work, the entire show is centered around Reich’s chamber music for strings. We start with Clapping Music, a miniature prelude performed by the members of So Percussion (who have also contributed a blog entry on their musical debt to Reich). Following that, we hear some of his most lyrical and intriguing writing for strings in Cello Counterpoint, Different Trains as well as Triple Quartet, featuring cellist Peter Gregson, the Chiara Quartet and AXIOM, respectively.