In recent years the music of minimalist composers such as La Monte Young, Terry Riley, Steve Reich and Philip Glass has, increasingly, become the subject of important musicological reflection, research and debate. Scholars have also been turning their attention to the work of lesser-known contemporaries such as Phill Niblock and Eliane Radigue, or to second and third generation minimalists such as John Adams, Louis Andriessen, Michael Nyman and William Duckworth, whose range of styles may undermine any sense of shared aesthetic approach but whose output is still to a large extent informed by the innovative work of their minimalist predecessors. Attempts have also been made by a number of academics to contextualise the work of composers who have moved in parallel with these developments while remaining resolutely outside its immediate environment, including such diverse figures as Karel Goeyvaerts, Robert Ashley, Arvo PÃ¤rt and Brian Eno. Theory has reflected practice in many respects, with the multimedia works of Reich and Glass encouraging interdisciplinary approaches, associations and interconnections. Minimalism’s role in culture and society has also become the subject of recent interest and debate, complementing existing scholarship, which addressed the subject from the perspective of historiography, analysis, aesthetics and philosophy. The Ashgate Research Companion to Minimalist and Postminimalist Music provides an authoritative overview of established research in this area, while also offering new and innovative approaches to the subject.
’This is an extremely welcome addition to the growing literature on minimalist and postminimalist music. Its diversity of approaches, variety of topics and perspectives, and varied array of authors successfully quashes any reservations that might be made about a book with such a title. The Introduction provides a splendid summary of the historical and contemporary situation whilst demonstrating awareness of (and successfully tackling) the many complications, complexities and ambiguities of the term 'minimalism'. It serves as an excellent introduction to the book but is also an intelligent and engaging exploration of the core and tangential repertoire. The book adds up to a fascinating study and will be much valued by non-academic and academic readers both within and outside of the academy alike.’ Philip Thomas, University of Huddersfield, UK ’Nearly every author you might want to contribute to a book like this has been included ... high levels of insight and approachability’. Tempo ’ ... the book manages to give a fair sense of the diffusion of minimalism as it flowed out beyond its (mainly) American wellsprings and of how its consequent enrichment or dilution (according to taste) has been able to achieve and then sustain such a prominent position in our 'consumer culture'. ... it cannot be accused of exaggerating the impact minimalism continues to have on contemporary culture, and contemporary musical life. It does justice to the ambivalent times’. The Musical Times '... this is an essential addition to the growing scholarship on minimalism. These twenty-two chapters contain a wealth of ideas that I believe will be used as a standard reference for music undergraduates, graduates, and professionals for years to come.' Canadian Association of Music Libraries Review ’... accessible to a range of readers; the research community that the volume’s title suggests is its target audience but also for others approaching the subject from another discipline