Tuesday, 8 November 2016
Last night I had the privilege of meeting with Sir Harrison Birtwistle shortly before his Wien Modern concert. We spoke about non- musical matters.
During the evening he answered questions from the audience. The following comments are, as he says, of their time:
What I am doing is in the spirit of the moment. I don't change my music. It changes me. I couldn't write a different music than I write now or at any other time.
Minimal is now. It is a reaction to something. When they throw their dirty washing in the corner after the event it doesn't interest me.
The proms is not about music. It's a celebration . . . about nothing.
It happens that things globally are of their time. You can't be original.
You have to be able to feel the draught under the door.
Boulez' Le marteau is one of the most important things written since the end of the 2nd World War.