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Thomas Ades: Full of Noises: Conversations with Tom Service

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Thomas Ades: Full of Noises: Conversations with Tom Service Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Composer, conductor, and pianist, Thomas Adès is one of the most diversely talented musical figures of his generation. His music is performed by great opera companies, symphony orchestras, chamber groups, and music festivals throughout the world. But Adès has resisted public discussion of the creative process behind his musical compositions. Until now, the interior experience that has fired the spectrum of his work—from his first opera, Powder Her Face, to his masterpiece The Tempest and his acclaimed orchestral works Asyla and Tevot—has largely remained unexplained. Here, in spirited, intimate, and, at times, contentious conversations with the distinguished music critic Tom Service, Adès opens up about his work. “For Adès, whose literary and artistic sensibilities are nearly as refined and virtuosic as his musical instincts,” writes Service, “inhabiting the different territory of words rather than notes offers a chance to search out new creative correspondences, to open doors—a phrase he often uses—into new ways of thinking in and about music.”

The phrase “full of noises,” from Calibans speech in The Tempest, refers both to the sounds “swirling around” Adèss head that are transmuted into music and to the vast array of his musical influences—from Sephardic folk music, to 1980s electronica, to Adèss passion for Beethoven and Janáček and his equally visceral dislike of Wagner. It also suggests “the creative friction” essential to any authentic dialogue. As readers of these “wilfully brilliant” conversations will quickly discover, Thomas Adès: Full of Noises brings us into the “revelatory kaleidoscope” of Adèss world.

Review:

"For the past 12 years, music critic Service and Adès have been talking about the ways that Adès — the brilliant composer, conductor, and pianist — conjures his musical inventions from the sounds swirling in his head, how he reimagines the music of the past, from Beethoven to Ligerti, and the ways that his music explores the intersections of music and literature. Throughout 2011, the two met at Adès's London home and recorded the interviews gathered in this new collection, which ranges over many of the same subjects and offers us a glimpse of Adès's creative mind at work. Reflecting on the central theme of stability and equilibrium in music, Adès observes that 'the music we listen to is the residue of an endless search for stability... that's the way I understand everything in musical history.' Exploring the reasons he starts composing a certain piece of music, Adès reveals that he's always been preoccupied by the 'why' and 'how' of composition. Early on, he thought that writing a new opera was 'purely the creation of an alternative reality' into which one can escape. Now, however, he's come to the conclusion that 'you try to create a simulacrum of the real world, a reflection. The piece is a way of trying to make the real world real again, in a sense.' Energetic, honest, and warm, these conversations between friends reveal the intricacies of the creative process and a deep and abiding love of music." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

A wide-ranging and highly opinionated conversation about the creative impulse, by a happening young composer

Composer, conductor, and pianist, Thomas Adès is widely considered the preeminent musical figure of his generation. His orchestral pieces, chamber music, and operas are performed throughout the world. He is also sought after as both a conductor and a pianist on the international concert stage. Yet Adès is secretive, especially about what lies behind his impulse to compose. The poetry, technique, and experiences that fuel the spectrum of his work—from his first opera, Powder Her Face, to his masterpiece The Tempest and his orchestral works Asyla and Tevot—have remained hidden and unexplained until now.

     In intimate and spirited conversation with the distinguished music critic Tom Service, Adès reveals for the first time how he creates music, where it comes from, and what it means to compose. Adès connects his music with a broad range of influences—from Sephardic folk music to 80s electronica, and from the films of Luis Buñuel and pre-Columbian art to the soundtracks of al-Qaeda training videos. Thomas Adès: Full of Noises contains insights into the mind of the composer on virtually every page. There are also many opinions: the music of Wagner is “essentially fungal”; Mahlers work is “relentlessly banal”; Verdis Simon Boccanegra is “like a bad joke.” And yet there is a deeply affirmative quality about these conversations, which will delight readers interested in music and the creative process.

Synopsis:

Composer, conductor, and pianist, Thomas Adès is one of the most diversely talented musical figures of his generation. His music is performed by great opera companies, symphony orchestras, chamber groups, and music festivals throughout the world. But Adès has resisted public discussion of the creative process behind his musical compositions. Until now, the interior experience that has fired the spectrum of his work—from his first opera, Powder Her Face, to his masterpiece The Tempest and his acclaimed orchestral works Asyla and Tevot—has largely remained unexplained. Here, in spirited, intimate, and, at times, contentious conversations with the distinguished music critic Tom Service, Adès opens up about his work. “For Adès, whose literary and artistic sensibilities are nearly as refined and virtuosic as his musical instincts,” writes Service, “inhabiting the different territory of words rather than notes offers a chance to search out new creative correspondences, to open doors—a phrase he often uses—into new ways of thinking in and about music.”

The phrase “full of noises,” from Calibans speech in The Tempest, refers both to the sounds “swirling around” Adèss head that are transmuted into music and to the vast array of his musical influences—from Sephardic folk music, to 1980s electronica, to Adèss passion for Beethoven and Janáček and his equally visceral dislike of Wagner. It also suggests “the creative friction” essential to any authentic dialogue. As readers of these “wilfully brilliant” conversations will quickly discover, Thomas Adès: Full of Noises brings us into the “revelatory kaleidoscope” of Adèss world.

About the Author

Thomas Adès is widely considered the foremost composer of his generation. His first opera, Powder Her Face, has been produced throughout the world; his 1997 orchestral piece Asyla won a Grawemeyer Award; and his 2004 opera The Tempest was staged at the Royal Opera House to huge critical acclaim. The Tempest premiered at the Metropolitan Opera in October 2012, with Adès at the podium. Adès was artistic director of the Aldeburgh Festival for a decade, has conducted orchestras from the New York Philharmonic to the London Symphony Orchestra, and has had festivals worldwide devoted to his music.

Tom Service writes about music for The Guardian, where he was chief classical music critic, and broadcasts for BBC Radio 3. He has presented Radio 3s flagship magazine program, Music Matters, since 2003. Service was the inaugural recipient of the ICMP/CIEM Classical Music Critic of the Year Award and a guest artistic director of the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival. He is the author of Music as Alchemy: Journeys with Great Conductors and Their Ochestras.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374276324
Author:
Ades, Thomas, Composer
Publisher:
Farrar Straus Giroux
Author:
Service, Tom
Author:
Ades, Thomas
Author:
Ad?'s, Thomas
Subject:
Biography-Composers and Musicians
Subject:
Composers & Musicians
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20121031
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
List of Works/Index
Pages:
208
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.5 in

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Music » Biographical Reference
Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Classical » Biographies
Arts and Entertainment » Music » Individual Composer and Musician
Biography » Composers and Musicians

Thomas Ades: Full of Noises: Conversations with Tom Service New Hardcover
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Product details 208 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374276324 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "For the past 12 years, music critic Service and Adès have been talking about the ways that Adès — the brilliant composer, conductor, and pianist — conjures his musical inventions from the sounds swirling in his head, how he reimagines the music of the past, from Beethoven to Ligerti, and the ways that his music explores the intersections of music and literature. Throughout 2011, the two met at Adès's London home and recorded the interviews gathered in this new collection, which ranges over many of the same subjects and offers us a glimpse of Adès's creative mind at work. Reflecting on the central theme of stability and equilibrium in music, Adès observes that 'the music we listen to is the residue of an endless search for stability... that's the way I understand everything in musical history.' Exploring the reasons he starts composing a certain piece of music, Adès reveals that he's always been preoccupied by the 'why' and 'how' of composition. Early on, he thought that writing a new opera was 'purely the creation of an alternative reality' into which one can escape. Now, however, he's come to the conclusion that 'you try to create a simulacrum of the real world, a reflection. The piece is a way of trying to make the real world real again, in a sense.' Energetic, honest, and warm, these conversations between friends reveal the intricacies of the creative process and a deep and abiding love of music." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , A wide-ranging and highly opinionated conversation about the creative impulse, by a happening young composer

Composer, conductor, and pianist, Thomas Adès is widely considered the preeminent musical figure of his generation. His orchestral pieces, chamber music, and operas are performed throughout the world. He is also sought after as both a conductor and a pianist on the international concert stage. Yet Adès is secretive, especially about what lies behind his impulse to compose. The poetry, technique, and experiences that fuel the spectrum of his work—from his first opera, Powder Her Face, to his masterpiece The Tempest and his orchestral works Asyla and Tevot—have remained hidden and unexplained until now.

     In intimate and spirited conversation with the distinguished music critic Tom Service, Adès reveals for the first time how he creates music, where it comes from, and what it means to compose. Adès connects his music with a broad range of influences—from Sephardic folk music to 80s electronica, and from the films of Luis Buñuel and pre-Columbian art to the soundtracks of al-Qaeda training videos. Thomas Adès: Full of Noises contains insights into the mind of the composer on virtually every page. There are also many opinions: the music of Wagner is “essentially fungal”; Mahlers work is “relentlessly banal”; Verdis Simon Boccanegra is “like a bad joke.” And yet there is a deeply affirmative quality about these conversations, which will delight readers interested in music and the creative process.

"Synopsis" by ,

Composer, conductor, and pianist, Thomas Adès is one of the most diversely talented musical figures of his generation. His music is performed by great opera companies, symphony orchestras, chamber groups, and music festivals throughout the world. But Adès has resisted public discussion of the creative process behind his musical compositions. Until now, the interior experience that has fired the spectrum of his work—from his first opera, Powder Her Face, to his masterpiece The Tempest and his acclaimed orchestral works Asyla and Tevot—has largely remained unexplained. Here, in spirited, intimate, and, at times, contentious conversations with the distinguished music critic Tom Service, Adès opens up about his work. “For Adès, whose literary and artistic sensibilities are nearly as refined and virtuosic as his musical instincts,” writes Service, “inhabiting the different territory of words rather than notes offers a chance to search out new creative correspondences, to open doors—a phrase he often uses—into new ways of thinking in and about music.”

The phrase “full of noises,” from Calibans speech in The Tempest, refers both to the sounds “swirling around” Adèss head that are transmuted into music and to the vast array of his musical influences—from Sephardic folk music, to 1980s electronica, to Adèss passion for Beethoven and Janáček and his equally visceral dislike of Wagner. It also suggests “the creative friction” essential to any authentic dialogue. As readers of these “wilfully brilliant” conversations will quickly discover, Thomas Adès: Full of Noises brings us into the “revelatory kaleidoscope” of Adèss world.

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