Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Remembering Lukas

"Why do we pigeonhole and label an artist? It is a sure way of missing the important, the contradictory, the things that make him or her unique" -- Lukas Foss.

As the Center prepares to announce its 2009-10 season, we'd like to take a moment to remember Lukas Foss, who passed away on February 1 at the age of 86. Foss was undoubtedly important, sometimes contradictory, and certainly unique. The New York Times ran an extensive obituary by Allan Kozinn, who commented, "Mr. Foss preferred to explore the byways of the avant-garde, focusing at different times on techniques from serialism and electronic music to Minimalism and improvisation. But as he moved from style to style, his voice remained distinctive, partly because he distrusted rules and never fully adhered to those of the approaches he adopted, and partly because a current of mercurial wit ran through his work.”

The spirit of Lukas Foss still animates the Center for 21st Century Music. His integrity, intellectual curiosity, and his openness to a wide variety of musical languages resonate to this day. (Photo: Irene Haupt)

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