Winter Music

Rehearsing the Concert for Piano and Orchestra. John Cage explaining the world (!) in Jordan Hall, 1991. I’m kneeling onstage. We recorded the Winter Music later that week.

Recorded under the supervision of John Cage in 1991, and directed by Stephen Drury, with the Caluthumpian Consort: we recorded for Mode Records at Jordan Hall (New England Conservatory), Boston. Pianists include Alanna Battat, Guy Livingston (arrangement) and Joanna Kovitz…

Don’t Panic: sixty seconds for piano

“Daring to be New” —Allan Kozinn, The New York Times

“All about risk” —Sports Illustrated

“Bravura emblematic of the richness than one minute can hold… A postmodern fantasy.. Superbly shows off Guy Livingston’s vocal and fingerwork virtuosity.”
—Le Monde

“The composers create radical and independent worlds, full of charm or anguish.” Coup de Coeur Award —Piano Magazine

“Cutting Edge”—Paris Free Voice

“Taking Excess to Extremes” —Bernard Holland, The New York Times

The CD mixes a wide range of new music styles ranging from jazzy and neo-classical works through virtuosic- serialism and unsettling performance-art. Dutch minimalist Louis Andriessen, Rome Prize winner Derek Bermel, agent provocateur Atsushi Yoshinaka, multi-instrumentalist Elliott Sharp, Guggenheim Fellow and genre-bender Donal Fox, and Pulitzer-prize winner William Bolcom lead off a list of talented composers. This is a brilliant new CD on Wergo Records (Germany) created by American pianist Guy Livingston to showcase the endless possibilities of new turn-of-the-century music: This is not your father’s piano recital.

ex tempore, by Marek Zebrowski, performed by Guy Livingston (Fazioli piano) in Paris.
one minute composition by Simonis, performed by Guy Livingston (Fazioli piano) in Paris.

Speed Study 1, by Dan Warburton

WENDIGO, by Jonathan Katz

Losing it again, by Daniel Landau

What if I just said…, by Carl Faia


Step out of the Car, by Roger Kleier

The Scream, by Donal Fox

Database of Desire, by James Baiye

“scendi un minuto”, by Roberto Andreoni

Mason and Dixon, by Brian Escriv

Brooklyn, October 5, 1941, by Annie Gosfield

re: dance (PNMR), by Paul Beaudoin

Ex tempore, by Marek Zebrowski

not [an] anfang, by Louis Andriessen

Spangles, by Christopher Culpo

42 Second Piano, by Isak Goldschneider

Conflict of Interest, by Richard Brooks

Joke, by Danielle Baas

Cowboy Song, by Charles Shadle

Who asked you?, by Sophie de Wit

EIGHT 8, by Pepe-Tonino Caravaggio

Watermelon Revisited, by T.J. Anderson

The Kodaly Method, by Paul Von Hippel

NA’OU’RA (the Wedding Dance), by Eilon Aviram

59” of Piano, by Jonathan Norton

cold springs branch, 10 p.m., by Alan Frederick Shockley

Hammerklavier XI, by Moritz Eggert

MEDITATION, by Derek Bermel

Tonal Imagery, by Tuyet A. Tran

Slusha, for C.E., by Fritz Lauer

A 60-second Ballet (for chickens), by William Bolcom

Two-Chord Warp, by Joshua Cody

GIRO 1, by Joanna Bailie

1’ de Tonio Kröger, by Martial Robert

Absolutis-s, by Patricia Elizabeth Martinez

PASSATEMPO, by Riccardo Vaglini

im afraid you might ask for a fragment of my soul, by Gene Pritsker

Nakano-ku (à S.D.), by Newt Hinton

Moondrunk, by Ketty Nez

xxx.rhapsody, by Patrick Callahan

prelude 1, by Yoichi Togawa

Punch and Judy’s Waltz, by Barbara Engel

Miro Sketch: Mostly Yellow, by Joseph (Butch) Rovan

Sonata Moirai, by Frederick Frahm

Jenseits des Guten und des Bösen, by Victor Ekimovsky

Verschiebung, by Alper Maral

Piano Piece for Guy, by Stéphane Leach

piece for paws, by Ketzel Cotel

DD (Double D), by Vanessa Lann

Minute Rice, by Walter Haven

Saltarello for Guy, by Giovanni Mancuso

Polis, by Sergio Pallante

réveil, by D. Andrew Stewart

Snaps, by Elliott Sharp

Specks, by Robert Eidschun

Prelude, by Lionel Sainsbury

Tight, by Rick Carrick

Thinking, by Walter Sanchez

HARU NO YOI-Miyabi no Uta, by Atsushi Yoshinaka

Parce-que je le vaux bien, by Atanasio Khyrsh

Theft, by Lansing D. McLoskey

Paris 1920s

Paris is a moveable feast

Ernest Hemingway

It is hard not to be intrigued by the period between the two wars, in which Paris flourished, and artists thrived. Montparnasse became legendary for its café life, as expats and locals fought their fights, argued over cubism, fashion, and politics, and lived their love affairs dramatically in the public eye. Key american figures were Gertrude Stein, Ernest Hemingway, and George Antheil. From the French side, Kiki of Montparnasse, Erik Satie, and Jean Cocteau fueled the passions and artisitic explorations of a generation. Stravinsky, Picasso, and Diaghilev were their heros.
Guy Livingston lived in Paris for 25 years, and is creating this program (detais to be announced) based on artists and writers from the parisian avant-garde ‘entre les deux guerres’…

Designers, architects, poets, and musicians at a formal reception in Paris. George Antheil, known as the “Bad Boy of Music” is at the center.

“George Antheil certainly has genius. I do not believe that he has arrived at the definitive formulation of his art. What he is presently giving us are rather his studies, his researches, which are very close to those of Picasso: without concession, as far as he can in a domain that is often arid. However, I have already been permitted to enjoy the absolutely new pathos of it, the uprooting rhythm, a joyful drunkenness of contradiction, a private discovery such as children sing to themselves— it drives out demons and fixes gods without asking them for their opinion.”

Adrienne Monnier, poet and bookstore owner on the rue de l’Odéon, Paris, in the 1920’s

Henry Cowell, inventor, bad boy, and genius

Henry Cowell on the roof of Carnegie Hall, performing “Advertisement”

Radio Show produced by Guy Livingston:

In Search of Henry Cowell for Australian Broadcasting Corporation (Into the Music)
two episodes about this maverick American composer and inventor who, despite many personal challenges (including 4 years in San Quentin prison) managed to create a fascinating and powerful body of work, ranging from magisterial American symphonies to quirky avant-garde piano works.

Henry Cowell (on the right) teaching Indian (Madras) drumming technique
Edgar Varèse and Henry Cowell on Henry’s back porch in upstate New York

Music and Outer Space

I’m involved in several projects related to music, sound, silence, and space travel. Aside from the lecture below, I’ve also recently participated in a show at the Leiden Observatory. This is related to my contribution to a conceptual Moon Gallery which could be launched and landed on the Moon as early as 2022. 

poster from a recent lecture at Tufts University, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing…

Performance Art

“the comic talent of a Buster Keaton” 
Het Parool, Netherlands


media art/installations

in his new series, “listen (to) the untitled 6.3”, multimedia artist Guy Livingston explores the cityscape via sound. In New York, nearly everyone is walking down the street, lost in their own sonic world – listening to their own soundtrack on their own headphones; or talking to their own family or friends.

But what if you listened to someone else’s life or music? This is the challenge Livingston takes on with his listen to the untitled series.

Random residents stop on their way to work or play, and listen to the urban furniture: traffic cones, mailboxes, lampposts.

Each object tells a story; alternating with music inspired by the streetscape. No two objects are alike.