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Metaphors on Vision: James Tenney and Stan Brakhage, 1951-1964

Metaphors on Vision: James Tenney and Stan Brakhage, 1951-1964 ERIC SMIGEL On the weekend of December 8­10, 2006, three and a half months after the death of James Tenney, the California Institute of the Arts mounted a festival to celebrate the life and music of their beloved colleague, who had served as the Roy E. Disney Family Chair of Music Composition since 2000.1 The festival included a musical retrospective consisting of live performances of several of Tenney's compositions, and the screening of nine films, six of which were created by the renowned experimental filmmaker Stan Brakhage.2 Tenney appears in four of Brakhage's films, and his music is featured in three others, but with the exception of two early films and two early songs, they did not collaborate in the traditional sense, where each contributes to a joint venture. They preferred to create their work independently--almost all of Tenney's music that serves as a soundtrack for Brakhage's films was selected by the filmmaker among his friend's pre-existing music.3 The significance of their relationship, however, goes far beyond a handful of collaborative projects. Tenney and Brakhage were close friends for fifty years, during which time they worked together, exchanged letters, made cross-country trips to visit each other, and spent http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Music University of Illinois Press

Metaphors on Vision: James Tenney and Stan Brakhage, 1951-1964

American Music , Volume 30 (1) – Oct 24, 2012

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University of Illinois Press
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Copyright © University of Illinois Press
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1945-2349
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Abstract

ERIC SMIGEL On the weekend of December 8­10, 2006, three and a half months after the death of James Tenney, the California Institute of the Arts mounted a festival to celebrate the life and music of their beloved colleague, who had served as the Roy E. Disney Family Chair of Music Composition since 2000.1 The festival included a musical retrospective consisting of live performances of several of Tenney's compositions, and the screening of nine films, six of which were created by the renowned experimental filmmaker Stan Brakhage.2 Tenney appears in four of Brakhage's films, and his music is featured in three others, but with the exception of two early films and two early songs, they did not collaborate in the traditional sense, where each contributes to a joint venture. They preferred to create their work independently--almost all of Tenney's music that serves as a soundtrack for Brakhage's films was selected by the filmmaker among his friend's pre-existing music.3 The significance of their relationship, however, goes far beyond a handful of collaborative projects. Tenney and Brakhage were close friends for fifty years, during which time they worked together, exchanged letters, made cross-country trips to visit each other, and spent

Journal

American MusicUniversity of Illinois Press

Published: Oct 24, 2012

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