I am not interested in repeating successes
'I don't mind repeating failures until I get them right, but I am not interested in repeating successes'.Philip Glass explains his creative approach in an interview with Vicki Mackenzie in her book Why Buddhism? Martin Scorsese's celebrated 1997 film Kundun about the exile of the Dalai Lama, was scored by Philip Glass. The composer has been involved with Buddhist and Tibetan causes since the mid-1960s, and in conversation with Vicki Mackenzie he manages to nail the essence of Buddhism in one sentence -
'Funny isn't it? It turns out the pie in the sky is the same pie that's in your fridge'.On 10 March 1959 an anti-Chinese and anti-Communist revolt erupted in Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, which had been under Communist Chinese rule since the 1950 invasion. Protesters took to the streets of Lhasa on 12 March 1959 declaring Tibet's independence. Chinese and Tibetan troops moved into position over the next few days, and Chinese artillery was deployed within range of the Dalai Lama's summer palace, the Norbulingka.
On March 17, two artillery shells landed near the Dalai Lama's palace, triggering the flight into exile portrayed in Kundun. Open conflict began on March 19, including the shelling of the Norbulingka and Lhasa's major monasteries. Two days later the Chinese had suppressed the revolt. 86,000 Tibetans died in the 1959 uprising. Tibetan Uprising Day on March 10 commemorates these events every year. March 10 2009 marks the 50th anniversary of the continuing illegal Chinese occupation of Tibet.
Other composers influenced by Buddhism include John Cage, Jonathan Harvey, Lou Harrison and Edmund Rubbra.
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Wonderful and rewarding comments like yours reassure me that it isn't.
As do the extraordinary readership figures that this and similar posts are achieving.
On the current provisional schedule there will be more on Rubbra late tomorrow evening (Monday). Meanwhile I do recommend his Fifth Symphony (what is it about Fifth Symphonies?) if you don't know it.
This is the work that introduced me to Rubbra. The other evening I listened again to the 1978 Chandos recording by Hans-Hubert Schonzeler and the West Australian Symphony Orchestra.
Wonderful music and wonderful performance, and it is available from the Chandos website for £4.88.
1. Toscanini performed Rubbra's Brahms Variations (an orchestration of Brahms' Variations on a Theme of Handel) in January 1939 with the NBC Symphony in New York. The performance for radio was also issued as a commercial disc.
2. Sir Adrian Boult chose Rubbra's Second Symphony as one of his Desert Island Discs) in 1979. He was the dedicatee of the work!