Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices, and Organ (1973)

Steve Reich

in Writings on Music 1965–2000

Published in print October 2004 | ISBN: 9780195151152
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199850044 | DOI:
                   Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices, and Organ (1973)

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This chapter presents Reich's account of composing Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices, and Organ. The piece deals with two simultaneous and interrelated musical processes. The first is the building up, beat by beat, of a duplicate of a preexisting repeating marimba or glockenspiel pattern, with the duplicate being one or more beats out of phase with the original. This then triggers the second process of augmenting or lengthening the repeating chord cadences in the woman's voices and organ. The first process of rhythmic construction in the marimbas and glockenspiels has the effect of creating more fast-moving activity, which then triggers the voices and organ into doubling, quadrupling, and further elongating the duration of the notes they sing and play.

Keywords: marimba; chord cadences; glockenspiel

Chapter.  684 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: American Music

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