The WOW Files: Philip Glass Explains How “Mad Rush” Was Written For The Dalai Lama

by • April 28, 2012 • Inspiration, Music, The WOW FilesComments (0)13063

I’ve written many times here on FEELguide about my mad love for master modern composer Philip Glass, and of all his masterpieces, the one that has penetrated my soul deeper than all others is his achingly beautiful “Mad Rush”.  Earlier today the Metropolitan Museum of Art posted this terrific video/performance which is prefaced with an explanation from Philip himself who tells the audience about the backstory behind this profound piece of music.  Glass proceeds to tell the story of how back in 1979, the organizers of the Dalai Lama‘s very first public address in North America had approached Glass to create a piece of music with one very particular prerequisite: because the Dalai Lama’s schedule — and thereby his arrival at the venue — was so vague, they needed a piece of music that could be stretched for an indefinite period of time without the audience realize there was any delay occurring, and this, my friends, provided the beginnings for one of the most iconic minimalist compositions of all time.  Glass also elaborates that “Mad Rush” was originally composed as an organ piece, and was created on the very organ that rests inside New York’s Saint John The Divine Cathedral which sits near the northwestern corner of Central Park.  Any newly recorded Phillip Glass performance of “Mad Rush” is worth praising, but this MET performance in particular comes not only with the backstory from Glass himself, but also a collaboration with violinist extraordinaire Tim Fain.  All in all, it comes in at a delicious one hour and forty-four minutes, so sit back, grab whatever choice of stimulant or relaxant your heart desires, and enjoy.  I’ve also attached an exquisite Philip Glass performance of “Mad Rush” from inside Saint John The Divine Cathedral as well.  For the very best FEELguide posts related to Philip Glass simply CLICK HERE.

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