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Elliott Carter's Late Music

[Elliott Carter's Late Music cover]

The first comprehensive study of the late music of one of the most influential composers of the last half century, this book places Elliott Carter’s music from 1995 to 2012 in the broader context of post-war contemporary concert music, including his own earlier work. It addresses Carter’s reception history, his aesthetics, and his harmonic and rhythmic practice, and includes detailed essays on all of Carter’s major works after 1995. Special emphasis is placed on Carter’s settings of contemporary modernist poetry from John Ashbery to Louis Zukofsky. In readable and engaging prose, Elliott Carter’s Late Music illuminates a body of late work that stands at the forefront of the composer’s achievements.

Published by Cambridge University Press.

Read an excerpt (.pdf).

Also available from, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, or your favorite bookseller.


Part I. Context:
Ch 1. Carter's career and reception history
Ch 2. The elements of an aesthetic
Ch 3. Harmony
Ch 4. Rhythm and form

Part II. A Literary Imagination (Text Settings):
Ch 5. Sense and sensibility – opera
Ch 6. A kind of light – song cycles and other text settings

Part III. Instrumental Music:
Ch 7. Illusions – music for orchestra
Ch 8. Social aspirations – music for instrumental soloist and ensemble
Ch 9. A free society – music for large chamber ensemble
Ch 10. Social relations – music for small chamber ensemble
Ch 11. Reflections – short instrumental pieces.