Composing's not voluntary, you know. There's no choice, you're not free. You're landed with an idea and you have responsibility to that idea.
Music is such a problem in the time it takes.
Minimalism now is a reaction to what came before. It's absolutely of its time. Music moved into the set theory thing, and moved out of it.
In the end it doesn't matter what you do.
I'm not an architectural composer.
I wrote music as soon as I knew notation.
I think there are influences that you open the door to, and influences that come under the door.
I didn't have a record player.
I always write the pieces I want to write.
It's the irrational things that interest me.
There are rhythmic ideas which sometimes only work up to a point. In writing there are moments when it just comes off the page, it's not just a collection of notes.
I don't think there is much American music.
When I dealt with set theory, I could never make it be the music that I wanted.
The theatre only knows what it's doing next week, not like the opera, where they say: What are we going to do in five years' time? A completely different attitude.
You either are or you're not.
When I was a kid, I wrote music - from the age of 11 until the age of 18.
This sounds horribly pretentious, but I like to think that if music hadn't existed, I could have invented it.
The thing about influence is that any composer worth anything will give you the same names.
The piece that had a large influence on me was Turangalila.
The opera tells the story with all the built-in contradictions and from many different angles.
My attitude to writing is like when you do wallpapering, you remember where all the little bits are that don't meet. And then your friends say: It's terrific!
One thing I've tried to do in writing music is take on very basic things, very archetypal things.
My operas usually come from musical ideas rather than ideas about subject matter.
My operas and my theatre works are very formal pieces.
I don't have ideas so much as there are things which constantly evolve... there are various threads or layers, if you like, which change.
Follow AzQuotes on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. Every day we present the best quotes! Improve yourself, find your inspiration, share with friends