Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Humanity Within a Typewriter

Composer Leroy Anderson has been described as "one of the great American masters of light orchestral music". Although I suppose I prefer "heavier" orchestral music, today I appreciated Anderson's piece "The Typewriter" as performed by Alfredo Anaya with the Voces para la Paz (Músicos Solidarios) orchestra.

In an article about Anderson on NPR, Pat Dowell wrote:
Anderson's "The Typewriter," a pops-concert staple composed in 1950, actually features a manual typewriter on the stage with the orchestra. In a 1970 interview, Anderson described how he made the typing sound a part of the music, not just an added effect.

"We have two drummers," Anderson said. "A lot of people think we use stenographers, but they can't do it because they can't make their fingers move fast enough. So we have drummers because they can get wrist action."
The piece not only shows how technology can be applied in unexpected ways, but also how it can have hidden charms. As violinist and conductor Vladimir Spivakov said of Anderson's music, "The craftsmanship, the humor, the humanity!"

No comments:

Post a Comment