This interview appeared in the poetry publication, PN Review
Volume 39 Number 5, May – June 2013
Words and Music: A Conversation with Elena Ruehr A graduate of the Julliard School and the University of Michigan, and a faculty member at MIT, Boston-based composer Elena Ruehr has created works for chamber ensemble, orchestra, chorus, wind ensemble, opera, dance and silent film. Rhythmically intricate and melodically graceful, her music has seductive surfaces which belie its complexity. I met with Elena Ruehr in January 2012 to discuss her recent cantata, Averno, based on Louise Glück’s 2006 volume of that name, and to learn more about setting poetry. The conversation took final shape in a subsequent exchange of emails, but grew out of a warm and animated exchange in the composer’s living room last winter.