Philip Glass is one of the finest modern American composers. To celebrate his 75th birthday this month he and NPR are inviting the public to participate in a premier performance of his new work of his entitled The New Rule.
He has composed the work for the occasion with the idea in mind that both amateurs and professionals should be able to come together to perform the work successfully. The concert is being held in Times Square June 21st and will be videotaped and recorded as well so that everyone may enjoy the evening regardless of attendance.
To honor Philip Glass' 75th birthday this year, we here at NPR Music commissioned Glass to create a short work that would be great fun for amateur and professional singers alike. We're inviting the public to take part in this event on June 21, which will take place at one of the world's most iconic locations: Times Square. We'll be videotaping and recording the performance, so even if you can't be in New York that day, you can still experience this premiere.
We're joining forces with a festival that has in short order become a highlight of summer: Make Music New York, which presents hundreds of free, outdoor concerts across the city right on the summer solstice, June 21.
Glass's short piece is called The New Rule and features text by the medieval Sufi poet Rumi translated by Coleman Barks. The work for eight-part mixed chorus is adapted from the composer's 1997 3-D "digital opera" Monsters of Grace. Conductor Kent Tritle, one of America's leading choral conductors, will lead the singers in the Glass and movements from Bach's B Minor Mass; you can access the Bach parts at Make Music New York.
To participate, just download the score of The New Rule.
The event organizers are requesting (but not requiring) a reservation for all participants just to help move the evening along as smoothly as possible. Participants should meet on Thursday, June 21 at 6:30 p.m. in Father Duffy Square (the northern triangle of Times Square at Broadway and Seventh Avenue, between West 45th and 47th Streets).
Unfortunately I will be unable to attend but I encourage everyone to reach out and participate in this rare opportunity. If you can't read music look out for YouTube videos to begin to crop up as others learn their part and share their practice sessions. This is surely one of the summer's don't miss cultural and musical events.