Classical Music Now

The Vijay Iyer Interview: Deconstructing Classical Music

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⭐ Revolutionary alternatives to tokenistic diversity programmes

⭐ Deconstructing boundaries between jazz and classical and freeing yourself to make the music you want to make

⭐ Methods for sneaking improvisation in front of classical musicians without them freaking out.


Vijay Iyer is an ECM-signed artist. He has worked with Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble, written violin concertos for Jennifer Koh, and music for the LA Phil New Music Group. He has been ‘Jazz Artist of the Year’ more times in more magazines than it is polite to count and it is my immense honour to welcome him to Classical Music Now.

If you want to access the work for yourself and check go to 


Links and Show Notes

MixTape by Vijay’s students

Wadada Leo Smith

Fluxus movement

Mutations – Vijay Iyer

Shepard tone demonstration
Probably the most famous use of it in music

Time, Place, Action – Vijay Iyer (extracts)

Still Life With Commentator – Mike Ladd, Vijay Iyer

Vijay Iyer presents Ritual Ensemble at Wigmore Ensemble

Vijay’s conversation with Georgina Born

We didn’t really dig into Vijay’s views on genre and community, but they’re really good so if you’re interested you can hear him talking about it in an interview for the Ojai Music Festival, where he was musical director in 2017 –


Music played in this episode

Emergence – Vijay Iyer

Read Hugh’s article on Emergence that sparked this episode!

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Vijay Iyer EMERGENCE Published by Schott Music Corporation, New York NY

Emergence was commissioned by the National Forum of Music in Wroclaw, Poland which organizes Jazztopad Festival. It was premiered by the NFM Leopoldinum Chamber Orchestra in April 2016.


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