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Portrait of Composer Colin McPhee

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Item Type: Sound Recording Duration: 18 min
Event Type: Documentary Program Origin: KPFA

Charles Amirkhanian introduces the life and music of Colin McPhee (1901-1964), with commentary by Henry Cowell and Lou Harrison. A classically trained pianist and composer, McPhee became prominent in the 1930's modern music movement in New York. His life and music changed direction when he discovered Balinese music in 1931. He moved to Bali and thoroughly studied the indigenous music. McPhee composed music incorporating Balinese themes. His book “Music in Bali”, is the definitive text on the subject.

Listen to McPhee and Benjamin Britten performing "Tabuh Teluh," Balinese melodies transcribed for piano four-hands, and excerpts from the 1936 orchestral suite "Tabuh Tabuhan", and "Concerto for Piano and Wind Octet."

Musical Selections:  Tabuh Teluh [based on a traditional Indonesian melody] / Colin McPhee --Tabuh Tabuhan [excerpt] (1936) / Colin McPhee -- Concerto for Piano and Wind Octet [excerpt] (1928) / Colin McPhee
Performers:  Colin McPhee, piano (Tabuh Teluh)
Benjamin Britten, piano (Tabuh Teluh)
Genre:  New Music
Subject:  McPhee, Colin, 1900-1964; New music; Gamelan; Music -- Indonesia; Piano music (4 hands); Pianos (2) with orchestra; Orchestral music; Symphonies; Concertos (Piano with wind ensemble)
People:  McPhee, Colin, 1900-1964; Amirkhanian, Charles; Cowell, Henry, 1897-1965; Harrison, Lou, 1917-2003; Britten, Benjamin, 1913-1976
First Broadcast Date:  11/5/1980
 
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