Kevin Puts: “The symphony is not a trifle”

Posted on: August 9, 2013

On Monday’s (8/5) Deceptive Cadence blog at NPR, composer Kevin Puts writes, “In 2007, I was interviewed by a journalist over lunch a day before the premiere of my Violin Concerto. One of his first questions was, ‘So why do you write in these old forms, the symphony, the concerto?’ I told him that these were simply titles which imply nothing about the form, which was another thing entirely. But it led me to ask myself: What is a symphony these days?… The symphony is not a trifle. It is not cute or hip or light. It says something important—about life and death and cosmic stuff—and it does so without embarrassment. What it needs to say cannot be said in a few minutes; it is not short attention span music. It is music for the patient listener.… Since writing my first symphony, I have written three others…. They are rarely played.… Strangely, this doesn’t bother me the way it probably should. I feel very fortunate for the opportunities I had to write the pieces and the symphonic genre has led me to some wonderful places.”

Posted August 9, 2013