Colin McPhee
The Lure of Asian Music

directed by Michael Blackwood
58 minutes, color


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John Cage, Steve Reich, Aaron Copeland, Lou Harrison, Douglas Young, the Saarbrücken Symphony Orchestra, Dreamtiger Ensemble, and others.

A film about the composer-musicologist whose music and writing have given Westerners a better understanding and appreciation of Balinese gamelan music and dance. Seduced by recordings of Balinese music he heard in Paris in the 1920s, McPhee traveled to and settled in Bali. He was among a small group of artists and anthropologists who found their way there in the years following the First World War. While there, he not only studied Balinese music and culture, he also documented Bali's rapidly changing traditions. Among his writings are "A House in Bali," from which the text of the film is taken, and "Music in Bali," which is considered the definitive study of the island's music. McPhee's gamelan-oriented music is increasingly becoming a part of the repertoire of American and European symphony orchestras. Filmed in Bali, Europe, and the United States.

Colin McPhee
© Michael Blackwood Productions