More on my Performance in #4 in the Series, Greenlief@50—Five Concerts Celebrating the Saxophonist’s 50th Birthday

Phillip Greenlief, composer and musician

As mentioned in my previous post, I’ll be performing tomorrow night, February 17th, in #4 of the series, Greenlief@50—five concerts celebrating the saxophonist’s 50th birthday. That would be none other than Phillip Greenlief (photo above), who is not only a fine saxophonist, but a well-respected composer, music teacher and leader in the Bay Area experimental music scene. Phillip’s own Evander Music web site is the best source for more information about his career, recordings and calendar of upcoming performances.

Here is the program for the concert:

Concert #4
Tuesday, Feb 17, 2009, beginning at 9 p.m.
at The Uptown
1928 Telegraph Avenue (at 19th St, about a block from BART)
Oakland, California

Free Admission

Opening sets by the ensembles Weasel Walter/Devin Hoff/Darren Johnston/Damon Smith and Kwisp

I’ll be performing with the Cornelius Cardew Choir, the new music/sound art vocal ensemble, in the following set, in all but the last piece, starting around 10:00 p.m.:

Music for Large Ensemble—Compositions by Phillip Greenlief

Compound 1 (for Matthew Sperry)

M (for Margaret Greenlief)

Map Series #9: Oakland (for 21 Grand)

Compound 2 (for Angela Davis)

Fantasy for Electronics and Orchestra (for Evan Parker)

All compositions performed by Orchesperry and special guests: the Cardew Choir

Orchesperry: David Boyce, Kyle Bruckmann, Doug Carroll, Ann Dentel, Tom Djll, Val Esway, Tara Flandreau, Ron Heglin, Matt Ingalls, Marielle Jakobson, Darren Johnston, Aurora Josephson, Ava Mendoza, Lisa Mezzacappa, Kristin Miltner, Polly Moller, Tim Perkis, Jon Raskin, Gino Robair, Scott Rosenberg, Aram Shelton, Damon Smith, Cory Wright.

Members of the Cornelius Cardew Choir who will be performing include:

Katherine Setar
Sarah Rose Stiles
Bob Marsh
Brad Fischer
Cathryn Hrudicka
Tom Duff
Tom Bickley
Nancy Beckman
Marianne McDonald
Dave Cowen

A few more notes from Phillip Greenlief, about some of the compositions:

Compound 1 & 2 are works for voices and an electro-acoustic large ensemble. The idea behind Compound is to present three “strata”, or layers of sound material. The three layers are stacked according to dynamic levels (soft—loud) throughout the performance and in general, the voices are always on top.

Mixed groupings of instruments create textures and thematic material for the voices to mirror or variate. The singers are offered a word or set of words in each section and they are free to present the words or deconstruct and variate their syllabic aspects. The text was improvised by the composer and was inspired by his late friend, composer/musician Matthew Sperry.

Compound 1, for example, has 52 sections. Each section lasts in duration from approximately 7 seconds to 1 minute, and uses different groupings of instruments to create textural layers of sound and musical material.

M is a conducted improvisation where each member enters the performance on cue. Once cued, the musician must present one idea that they develop until the idea reaches fruition. Once the idea has been developed, the musician exits and lays out until the piece closes.

Oakland is part of the Map Series Works by Greenlief, and uses maps as iconic material for free improvisation. Surrounding the map on the score are layers of compositional elements and game strategies, all are presented in a collage-style. The musician travels through the piece at their own pace, visiting any compositional element or free improvisation at their own discretion. For this performance of Oakland, there will be additional scores for sections (winds/voices—strings—percussion/electronics) and the musicians can cue events on multiple scores once the piece is in play.

We hope to see you there! Please stop by and say hello if you come to hear us, or feel free to comment here. I’ll be posting updates about other upcoming performances on this blog.

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