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Chris Thile Is the God of Small Sounds

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Thursday November 29, 2018

From The New York Times

Chris Thile Is the God of Small Sounds
By: Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim

Unplugged, Chris Thile is the god of small sounds. He plays the mandolin, which means he coaxes music out of notes that are shy and short-lived. Mr. Thile is a superstar on this instrument, with multiple Grammys, a MacArthur “genius” grant and hosting duties on the radio variety show “Live From Here” (formerly “A Prairie Home Companion”) among his credits. But when he plays an acoustic solo program at Carnegie Hall, he has to do so in the pocket-size Weill Recital Hall. Even in such an intimate space, listening to each tiny note requires physical commitment, like catching snowflakes on your tongue.

[…] Mr. Thile has an advantage on a violinist: Without any large muscle groups involved in the production of sound, he can play the runs with lightning speed — or at least as fast as his pick can keep up. The music flies by in one joyous arc, with the linear melody and vertical harmony blurring into a single web of gossamer beauty.

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