This evening (Friday) on BBC4 is a programme called "The Magic of Minimalism" about the American composers Steve Reich, Terry Riley, Philip Glass and La Monte Young.
I shall probably watch it, of course, but Charles Hazlewood's description of them as 'great composers' is stretching it a bit. Their music is interesting but eventually becomes monotonous.
It would be a more interesting programme if he were to include the genuinely great 'minimalist' composers of the 20th century, the late Sir John Tavener and especially the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt
“I have discovered that it is enough when a single note is beautifully played. This one note, or a silent beat, or a moment of silence, comforts me. I work with very few elements – with one voice, two voices. I build with primitive materials – with the triad, with one specific tonality. The three notes of a triad are like bells and that is why I call it tintinnabulation”- Arvo Pärt
Herewith a selection of Tintinnabulation plus a rather quirky interview of Arvo Pärt by Björk.