Tonight I attended a concert at Columbia University’s Miller Theater. A former parent at Park West, George Lewis, composer and musician was portrayed through his compositions. As the program states, “he is a musician unlimited by boundaries between jazz and classical, or between improvised and notated music, or between performance and electronics, or even between music and other art forms.”
Parts of the program included poet Quincy Troupe reading his poems, Following the North Star Boogaloo and Collage.
One of the featured compositions, Artificial Life 2007, had no prescribed musical material. George created two pages of instructions, sometimes just words to indicate the kinds of sounds, or to repeat another musician’s notes. The musicians followed the instructions separately or together and the results depended on the performers taking part. It culminated in a period of collective silence. It was extremely creative and profound. This type of innovative exercise would be interesting for Montessori students to participate in. We all look forward to more compositions from George Lewis!