About the Music
Jay Schwartz's Music for Orchestra, Music for Six Voices, Music for 12 Cellos and Music for Five Stringed Instruments are now available on CD on the Wergo label, as part of the Deutscher Musikrat's series “Edition Zeitgenössischer Musik”.
Jay Schwartz's compositions employ aspects of the physics of sound and utilize tonality in the context of the physics of organic harmony, making use of the overtone spectrum, microtonality, and glissandi in a poetic context with a captivating sensuous drawing power and an unabashed emotional disposition.
Schwartz integrates these acoustical events in a clear, deliberately prolonged, coherent form, which generates a persistent metamorphosis as well as a conscious dramatic plan. Within these processes of continuously evolving unbroken development, cathartic events are aspired to, which culminate in concrete, usually harmonic, thematic material. With this conception, Schwartz's work contrasts expressly with the American schools of John Cage, minimalism, or neoromanticism. Schwartz's homogeneous instrumentations, as in Music for Orchestra (2005) for string orchestra, uphold his ideas of clarity, simplicity and of organic sound.
As in his compositions, Schwartz intends in his concert-installations to capture the archaic aspects of sound and implements phenomena of physics such a resonance transfer, magnetism, and infrasonics. In Music for Autosonic Gongs the instrument remains untouched and resonates on its own accord through an electroacoustical process. The sounds are purely non-electronic and organic. The powerful acoustical effect is a synthesis of the archaic with the avant-garde, a fundamental idea of Schwartz's work.