28 Nov 2015

John Luther Adams: music and nature

From Saturday Morning, 10:05 am on 28 November 2015

One of the biggest shows of Wellington's NZ Festival will see 60 musicians performing outdoors in a work called 'Sila: The Breath of the World'.

An orchestra plays on the waterfront.

Sila: The Breath of the World Photo: Kevin Yatarola for Lincoln Centre

The composer is John Luther Adams, who won the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 2014 with a symphonic work 'Become Ocean', which also won the Grammy in 2015 for Best Contemporary Classical Composition.

Much of Adams' work is inspired by nature, particularly Alaska, where he lived for nearly 40 years. There, he formulated his own type of American experimental music described as "shimmering, sonic landscapes".

Adams says that he hopes audiences at his festival performance will experience "a place that you know, in a different way".

LISTEN to his interview with Kim Hill on Saturday Morning.