Eric Whitacre & Godzilla: Alive and Well

by James Hogan
eric_whitacre150.jpgMendelssohn turned 200 years old, and while I’m glad he’s still hanging around Classical Music Camp (“Camp Johann” is the name I keep kicking around for fun), I wanted to focus my attention this week on a more recent composer, an American named Eric Whitacre.
He’s young (just turned 39). He’s hip. He didn’t learn to read music until he was in college, where he joined the college choir because the choir girls were good looking. But he worked his way through Julliard, collaborated with Barbara Streisand, and debuted a techno-opera in Los Angeles loosely based on Milton’s Paradise Lost. His work is popular across the globe–the cities of Sydney and Venice have each hosted Eric Whitacre festivals. He once wrote a piece entitled Godzilla Eats Las Vegas.