Radio SMCQ: John Rea

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada, 1944

  • Composer

A recipient of numerous awards, John Rea has frequently received commissions and written scores in various genres: instrumental chamber music, musical theater, electronic music, stage music, and works for large ensembles and vocal groups. Since 2002 his re-orchestration (1995) of the Alban Berg’s opera Wozzeck for twenty-one musicians, was presented a dozen times worldwide, with the most recent productions held in 2010 in San Francisco and Portland (Oregon). Among his latest creations include: Beauty Dissolves in a Brief Hour (2010), for two sopranos and accordion, the transcription of several Études de Ligeti, for the Sixtrum percussion ensemble (2009-10) and music for Pierre Lefebvre’s Lortie (Nouveau Théâtre Expérimental, 2008). A professor of composition, theory and orchestration at McGill University since 1973, between 1986 and 1991 John Rea was the Dean of the Faculty of Music (now known as the Schulich School of Music). A co-founder of two music companies in Montreal (Les Événements du neuf; Traditions musicales du monde), he also worked for almost twenty-five years at the Société de musique contemporaine du Québec. He has been on the editorial board for the periodical Circuit: musiques contemporaines for twenty years.

Translation: Peggy Niloff [i-11]

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