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Robert Ashley

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Robert Ashley may be either of two different artists - an American opera writer or an American video-games journalist and podcaster.

1. Robert Ashley (March 28, 1930 in Ann Arbor, Michigan – March 3, 2014) was a distinguished figure in American contemporary music, holding an international reputation for his work in new forms of opera and multi-disciplinary projects. His recorded works are acknowledged classics of language in a musical setting. He pioneered opera-for-television.

The operatic works of Robert Ashley are distinctly original in style, and distinctly American in their subject matter and in their use of American language. Fanfare Magazine calls Ashley’s Perfect Lives “nothing less than the first American opera…”, and The Village Voice comments, “When the 21st Century glances back to see where the future of opera came from, Ashley, like Monteverdi before him, is going to look like a radical new beginning.” A prolific composer and writer, Ashley’s operas are “so vast in their vision that they are comparable only to Wagner’s Ring cycle or Stockhausen’s seven-evening Licht cycle. In form and content, in musical, vocal, literary and media technique, they are, however, comparable to nothing else.” (The Los Angeles Times).

Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1930 Robert Ashley was educated at the University of Michigan and the Manhattan School of Music. At the University of Michigan, he worked at the Speech Research Laboratories (psycho-acoustics and cultural speech patterns), and was employed as a Research Assistant in Acoustics at the Architectural Research Laboratory.

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