Thomas Ades is feted from Los Angeles to London, from New York to Berlin, as the musician who has done more than any other living composer to connect contemporary music with wider audiences. But this celebrated composer, conductor and pianist is notoriously secretive about his creative process, about what lies behind his compositional impulse. Here, Ades opens up for the first time, in conversations with Tom Service, about how he creates his music, where it comes from, and what it means.
In these provocative and challenging interviews, Ades connects his music with influences from a huge historical and cultural spectrum - from Sephardic Jewish folk music to 80s electronica, from the films of Luis Bunuel and pre-Columbian art to the soundtracks of Al-Qaeda training videos - and offers a unique insight into the crucible of composition. This edition is updated with a foreword on Ades's opera, Exterminating Angel.