Born April 14, 1933 in Los Angeles, California
Morton Subotnick is a major American composer of electronic music and an innovator of electroacoustic music (works combining instruments and other media, including interactive computer music systems). In 1967 he composed Silver Apples of the Moon, a commissioned work for Nonesuch Records on the Buchla modular synthesizer (created by Donald Buchla, with suggestions from Subotnick). The energetic dance-like rhythms and exotic timbres caught the public’s ear at a time when contemporary electronic music was rarely heard, and it became a bestselling LP in the classical music genre and has been choreographed by numerous dance companies around the world. Other works include Wild Bull, Four Butterflies, Sidewinder, and Return (created to celebrate the return of Halley’s Comet).
Subotnick, a classically trained professional clarinetist, has also written for acoustic instruments, having studied with Darius Milhaud (of the French Les Six) and Leon Kirchner at Mills College in Oakland, California. He was drawn to atonal, serial, and aleatory music, inspired in his early years by Charles Ives, Schoenberg and Stockhausen. He has taught many years at CalArts School of Music.
Morton Subotnick has created some excellent educational software:
MAKING MUSIC CD-ROM by Morton Subotnick. Kids don’t have to be able to read to experiment with the basics of pitch, rhythm, sounds of instruments, and styles of music in these interactive music games. 3527 $39.95
by Morton Subotnick. Learn about the elements of music notation as you draw patterns on the musical canvas and convert into notation, experiment with different instruments and put together the components of an original score. Includes a virtual encyclopedia. Ages 8 and up. 3588 $39.95MAKING MORE MUSIC CD ROM
PLAYING MUSIC Software by Morton Subotnick. Experience how real musicians make music expressive! Use 15 tools to edit musical scores by 11 different composers; then hear a concert pianist or animated character perform your newly edited masterpiece. Also enjoy 9 videos; interactive animation; games; glossary; and more! 3383 $36
HEARING MUSIC CD ROM by Morton Subotnick. Hear music as expressive communication in a virtual playground of games that break musical concepts down to patterns and levels, posing a challenge to any user – from beginner to advanced. Ages 8 up.
- Listen to music by the world’s best composers, and explore the elements that build music.
- Hear the musical differences in endings, repetitions, and variations.
- Create melodies by linking musical phrases. Music notation on screen lets you see what you hear! Includes tools to manage progress.