“Durations I-V; Coptic Light” is an album that contains two works, “Durations” I-V and “Coptic Light”, by Morton Feldman (1926–1987), an American composer of the 20th century, who is known as a pioneer of indeterminate music and graphic notation.
“Durations” I-V were recorded by Ensemble Avantgarde in 1994. “Coptic Light” was recorded by Michael Morgan (conductor) and Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin in 1992.
The album was released by German record label cpo (Classic Produktion Osnabrück) in 1997.
Durations I-V (1960–1961)
A series of chamber music, “Durations” I-V (1960–1961) is a group of quiet compositions, in which the interaction between muted, sustained tones of instruments (piano, violin, violoncello, vibraphone and others) gives a strangely drawling sense of time. It consists of the following five pieces:
- Durations I, for alto flute, piano, violin, and cello (1960)
- Durations II, for cello and piano (1960)
- Durations III, for violin, tuba, and piano (1961)
- Durations IV, for vibraphone, violin, and cello (1961)
- Durations V, for horn, vibraphone, harp, piano or celesta, violin, and cello (1961)
Coptic Light (1986)
An orchestral work composed in his last days, “Coptic Light” (1986) is a minimalistic and beautiful piece inspired by Middle Eastern textiles, featuring repeating and subtly changing patterns by a variety of instrumental groups, like restless waves.
The album is recommended for those who like John Cage’s quiet compositions, minimalist music such as Steve Reich, and experimental contemporary music.