PHILIP ON FILM pomegranate arts
pomegranate arts - projects

Philip Glass

Established by composer Philip Glass, the first performance by the Philip Glass Ensemble was held in May 1969 at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, City. Their signature sound of amplified chamber music was first embraced by the visual art community working in SoHo in the early 1970's. The early concerts performed by the Philip Glass Ensemble were performed in galleries, artist lofts, and museums rather than traditional music venues. Over the past forty years, the PGE has performed in major arts centers and festivals on five continents. Its members are the premiere performers of the music of Philip Glass and continue to be an inspiration for new work.

Retrospective Concerts: Forty-year retrospective concerts of repertoire written by Philip Glass for the Philip Glass Ensemble include selections from the iconic works such as Einstein on the Beach, Music in 12 Parts, Koyaanisqatsi, and Glassworks.

Residencies: Members of the Philip Glass Ensemble are available for multi-day residencies. Options include workshops on vocal technique, woodwind master classes, and electronic music programming.

Considered to be one of the most influential composers ever to work in film, Philip Glass has reinvented the relationship between music and the moving image. Rather than simply providing music as accompaniment to an otherwise finished film, Glass considers music an essential narrative force and has worked as a true collaborator with directors including Godfrey Reggio, Martin Scorcese, Errol Morris, Peter Weir and Stephen Daldry among many others, conceptualizing the score from the initial stages of the film and sharing in the editing process. From the beginnings of his work in film, the composer saw the potential for his film scores to be played live in concert. The events are a synthesis of music concert and film event—the merger creates an intense performance experience far more powerful than cinema alone. Glass has also brought a new life to vintage cinamatic classics, reinventing these legendary films for a new live context.

THE QATSI TRILOGY (Godfrey Reggio): The result of a twenty-year collaboration between filmmaker Godfrey Reggio and Philip Glass, The Qatsi Trilogy was conceived as an experiment in non-verbal film integrating images, music and ideas. Created for a worldwide audience, the trilogy conveys its message entirely through the universal language of image and sound, resulting in motion pictures that forever transformed the unique relationship between music and the moving image.
KOYAANISQATSI:and the subsequent POWAQQATSI: Life in Transformation (1987) and NAQOYQATSI: Life as War (2002) have been released in over 60 countries, televised and on home video in over 30 countries, invited to over 70 international film festivals and performed live worldwide with the Philip Glass Ensemble. The films have been seen by over 35 million people. Premiered by the LA Philharmonic, Koyaanisqatsi and Powaqqatsi have been arranged for symphony orchestra and choir to accompany the PGE.

LA BELLE ET LA BÊTE: Beauty and the Beast (Jean Cocteau, 1946): One of the most celebrated and unique works of Philip Glass' career is his interpretation of Cocteau's masterpiece LA BELLE ET LA BÊTE, Glass' most challenging experiment in synchronizing music with film. For the production, Glass removed the film's original dialogue track and score, replacing it with his own, played live by the Philip Glass ensemble. The dialogue is sung by live singers synchronized with the actors in the film.

DRACULA: Starring Bela Lugosi (Tod Browning, 1931). Glass composed the intense and sweeping Dracula score for the Kronos Quartet when he was asked by Universal to create a score for this early talkie. Appearing together live along with the original horror classic shown in its entirety, Glass and Kronos perform a concert of one of the most intense and atmospheric scores Philip Glass has ever written. Dracula has also been arranged for the Philip Glass Ensemble.

Philip Glass conceived The Etudes as a set of twenty works for solo piano in order to expand his piano technique. In the 1990's Glass composed sixteen of the etudes with each taking a unique approach to the instrument. After a decade, the final four piano etudes have been commissioned in culmination of Glass' 75th birthday year, premiering in Perth, Australia on February 16, 2013. The complete set of The Piano Etudes will be performed by Philip Glass and guest pianists in an evening of master piano works for the 21st century.


An intimate evening of work for solo acoustic piano featuring recent etudes composed and performed by Philip Glass.

A collection of newly-composed works for strings performed by favorite chamber players selected by Philip Glass. Ranging from duets to octetes, chamber evenings feature his most recent compositions and may be presented as a collection or paired with works from the classical repertoire.

In celebration of Philip Glass' 75th birthday in 2012, Pomegranate Arts has spear-headed a campaign to launch an international tour of Robert Wilson and Philip Glass' seminal collaborative work EINSTEIN ON THE BEACH. First performed in 1976 at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York and the Festival d'Avignon, the opera subsequently toured in 1984 and 1993 to a select number of cities. It has never been seen outside of New York City in North America.

Widely credited as one of the greatest artistic achievements of the 20th century, EINSTEIN ON THE BEACH changed opera forever and continues to be recognized as one of contemporary performance's greatest masterpieces.

projects home about pomegranate arts
philip on film