When I was about 16 I saw the Philip Glass Ensemble in Houston and it absolutely blew my world open. I had been playing the Cello in an orchestral setting since I was about 9 and attending concert's at Rice's Shepherd School with my parents since I could walk, but our orchestra didn't get much more adventurous than Danzon Cubano and the student work at Rice was mostly repertory standards (the performance students) or so out there that it never really clicked with me (the composers). The PGE concert came together in a way that changed my understanding of performance, of the value of live music, of what music could be; and it suddenly left me searching for (and finding) more than a lifetime of incredible music. I was actually there on a first date with a girl I had wanted to date for a while, but all I remembered even the next day was the music. I was locked into my seat the entire time, achieving some kind of otherworldly experience with the 3rd act of The Photographer. I'm not sure I said anything to my date for the rest of the night. I was still in it, and sorting out what exactly "it" was for a week. Thankfully she was a wonderful person and we remained friends, but I can honestly say that Glass has now impacted my life far more than she.
Allen Pierce