The Brothers Balliett Talk to Ray Lustig

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The third composer-guest to visit the brothers' lair is a composer who is in constant dialogue with the past, but this is no rewarming, indeed, it is not even a reimagining. Ray Lustig synthesizes his varied influences—including Thomas Tallis, Arvo Part, Peteris Vasks, and his NYC colleagues Vivian Fung and Ryan Francis—with a keen sense for beauty and an active, fertile imagination.

Lustig is no stranger to the NYC new-music scene, with performances by the likes of the American Composers Orchestra, BLIND EAR, Metropolis Ensemble, and the Juilliard Symphony and New Music Group. An imagination the size of Ray's frequently requires large forces, and we'll hear selections from two recent orchestral works. The middle movement of Unstuck, "Tangles and Spirals," examines the the nature of memory through the lens of thoughts about Alzheimer's disease. The fascinating recent work Latency Canons exploits the limits of technology to create a stunning and soft-edged world through simple lines that interact over time and space.

It's not only about the big guns with Ray, though. Through his Figments for guitar duo, Lustig explores an immediate and intimate type of communication through chamber music with eminently engaging results.

Paired with music by his idols—including Tallis and Part—this interview will leave you with the Lustig-bug. And that's a bug you want to catch.