Electronic music pioneer Morton Subotnick to play San Antonio concerts

The shows, part of a tour of just six cities, are expected to be among Subotnick's last before he retires from live performance.

click to enlarge Morton Subotnick twists dials at a live performance. - Courtesy Photo / Urban-15
Courtesy Photo / Urban-15
Morton Subotnick twists dials at a live performance.
Morton Subotnick — an electronic music pioneer credited with inspiring artists ranging from Daft Punk to Kraftwerk — will perform four concerts Nov. 10-12 at San Antonio arts nonprofit Urban-15.

The Urban-15 shows are expected to be among the 90-year-old Subotnick's final shows before he steps back from live performances. San Antonio is one of just six cities included in his As I Live and Breathe Tour, which also includes Berlin, Vienna, Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York.

The inclusion of the Alamo City dates stems from a longstanding collaborative friendship with Urban-15 head George Cisneros.    

Subotnick is widely regarded as one of the fathers of modern electronic music. His 1967 album Silver Apples of the Moon, released by Nonesuch Records, is recognized as the first electronic piece specifically commissioned for the LP format. The release had a seismic effect on the global music scene and has since been entered into the Library of Congress' National Register of Recorded Works.

Prior to recording Silver Apples, Subotnick worked with Ramon Sender and Pauline Oliveros to establish the San Francisco Tape Music Center. That entity, along with pioneering musician Don Buchla, played a pivotal role in transforming synthesizers — once an expensive institutional obscurity — into instruments in widespread use.

This won't be Subotnick's first San Antonio concert. He's performed here, starting in the '80s, as part of Cisneros' ambitious 3rd Coast New Music Festival. In 2013, he performed Silver Apples of the Moon in its entirety. Video from that 2013 performance is available below.

Morton Subotnick - URBAN-15 Performance (2-22-13 Encore) from URBAN-15 Group on Vimeo.


Projections by German video artist Lillevan will accompany Subotnick's San Antonio performances. The concerts also will feature an "open conversation" during which the composer will field questions from audience members.

Tickets, which run $40 general admission or $20 for students, are available online.  

$20-$40, Friday, 8 p.m. Nov. 10, 1 p.m. and 8 p.m. Sat., Nov. 11 and 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 12, Urban-15, 2500 S. Presa, (210) 736-1500, urban15.org.

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