John Adams

Chairman Dances: “Foxtrot for Orchestra”

        This composition is a brilliant little piece that, despite its evident attractiveness, doesn’t quite convey the significance of its composer. Adams is perhaps the most important and distinguished composer of our time. Many critics hail him as the clear successor to the mantle of Aaron Copland, and they have ample reason to do so. One respected writer deemed him “ . . . the exemplary American composer,” dismissing the music of Samuel Barber as too “genteel,” that of Charles Ives as too “ornery,” Bernstein’s as too “inconsistent,” and Elliot Carter’s as too “ugly.” No American composer of the last quarter century or so has composed so many significant works, so well received by both critics and the broader audiences, as has he.