April 16, 2013
By Hannis Brown/Kim Nowacki
It's difficult to overstate Morton Subotnick and Joan La Barbara's contributions to contemporary music.
Subotnick's pioneering work in electronic music includes such game-changing pieces as Silver Apples of the Moon and A Sky of Cloudless Sulphur. The composer, who turned 80 this past Sunday, also helped to develop the California Institute of the Arts's groundbreaking curriculum and co-founded the highly influential San Francisco Tape Music Center, where Terry Riley, Pauline Oliveros and Steve Reich would cut their teeth writing tape music.
Joan La Barbara is one of today's most iconic vocalists — John Cage and Morton Feldman both wrote music for her. Her own music, which often stretches the possibility of the human voice, has been honored with a slew of awards including a 2004 Guggenheim Fellowship in Music Composition.
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