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Volume 7 Issue 7 - April 2002

  • Text
  • April
  • Toronto
  • Theatre
  • Jazz
  • Arts
  • Bloor
  • Musical
  • Symphony
  • Choral
  • Gould

TAZZ NOTES by Jim ·

TAZZ NOTES by Jim · Galloway The Life Of Riley Definitely not the opera, but still somedling to sing about, is this month 's world premiere of a work by Doug Riley. His quartet, made up of Doug on piano, Chris Mitchell, saxophone, Steve Wallace, bass and Terry Clarke, drums will be joined on April 27, by the Toronto Sinfonietta, under Matthew Jaskiewicz for the first performance of Prince &Jwardlsland Suite -A Concerto for Orchestra and Jav:. Quartet. Doug spends four months a year on the island and the sheer beauty of the place combined with the warmth of the people were his. sources ofinspiration when he was commissiorted to write a concerto whicb would combine the elements of symphonic music and jazz. Each of the four movements is_ · a tone poem describing a particula,r aspect of the island with jazz improvisations extending the structures and harmoni~ employed in the piece. JAZZ AND BAND Orchestral colours and textures are labour of love as well as a daunting used to conjure up the visual and task and he deserves credit for takphysical experiences of the island. ing it on. And from what I know of The third movement (CEILIDH), the him, I'd be prepared to put money it Scherzo, also makes use of some of that the Prince Edward Island Suite the indigenous percussion instru- will be well worth hearing. The conments found on the island- boron, cert is on Saturday, April 27, 7:30 . spoons, and Celtic snare drum. pm at the-Isabel Bader Theatre, 93 .Therehavebeenmanyattempts Charles Street West (across from to combine classical music and jazz the ROM). - with varying degrees of success.\. There are basic di~erences. One The Life of O'Reilly . generally has a relauvel~ ~omp~ex By . the time you read this, Ted structure and fixed form within which O'Reilly will have resigned from there is r~om for interpretation. The Jazz. FM91 After 37 years the staother rel~es on the unexpected and tion has lost its most knowledgeable on surpns~. The ~hallenge of, sue- and most recognisable personality as cessfully mtegratmg the two was well as a piece of its heart and soul. take~ up by . sue~ compose.rs as The march towards a homogeneous Stravmsky, with his Ebony Suzte for sow 1d suitable for backoround non­ W oody. Herma?, Shost~kovitch, listening goes, relentlessly on. A jazz Proko'.1ev, M1lhaud, Le.onard world with a progranimed landscape BernstemandGeorgeGershwm. The and no surprises. ,Strike Up The results have provoked much de~ate Bland! as to how successful. or otherwise, . Not every 0 ne was a fan of Ted. they had ~n. . but nobody could ignore him. He had . There 1s no doubt ~at Jazz mu- strong opinions about most things and sic has had a pr~found infl_u~nc~ on aired them- literally. But he cared o.ther,fo~, be 1~ pop musi~ or s7- about the music and brought to the nous . W1~out~azz, todays music station a wealthofknowledgewhich, would be qmt~

y Merlin Williams Player's pet peeves · It's been a while since· I aired some of.my pet peeves about community bands. Regular readers know the love I have for bands--playing in concert bands was a substantial portion of my musical education. So why vent? Because I see problems in bands that could be easily fixed, thus providing a better musical experience for performers and their audiences. Probably the biggest single complaint I have is rehearsals that don't stan on time. If I show up to 7:·30 rehearsal, I expect to be playing on time. It's a pain for the people who dutifully show up on time when they have to wait for the Stragglers, wlro invariably disrupt things with their late entrance. Add to that the fact the the latecomers are rarely, if ever warmed up, and you end up wasting tremendous amounts of time. And while we're on the subject of warming up, let's talk about playing in tune. It's not the conductor's responsibility to tune up the band. Players have to take on that duty themselves. Tune up every time you play or practice to a reliable pitch, on a stable note on your instrument. ' Having the director walk around, tuner in hand and tell people to push in or pull out wastes massive amounts of rehearsal time and rarely _ produces satisfactory results. Next? Bring a pencil to rehearsal. Everyone! People without pencils should be fined. Anyone who writes on their music in pen (except when correcting a misprint) should have to buy a new copy of the piece. I'm tired of providing the "section pencil". , I'm not letting conductors off the hook either. Yes, players should be warmed up before they start; but it is important to get the group playing together and listening right from first downbeat. The best way? Start with a inarch, followed by a chorale. The march gets the air moving, and everyone has plenty of things to do. The chorale gets things bacl,< under control and gets the players focused on tuning and balance. When I played with the Chinguacousy band way back when, the rehearsal often started with the Royal Air Force March Past. I think I've still got it memorized. Set a break time and stick to it. If you start at 8 and end at 10, break at 9 for 15 minutes, and stick to it. People who find a quarter hour an inadequate amount of time to socialize in should go out for a drink after the rehearsal. Finish rehearsals on a high note. Perform apiece. Don'tjustrun through it. Let the players leave the room feeling a sense of accomplishment. And be prepared. Conductors expect players to walk. in to their rehearsals having -spent some time working on the repertoire. This is a reasonable expectation. It only follows then that the musicians should also expect the music director to have done the same kind of homework. I've had quite enough of conductors reading the score for the first time when they have the band start learning a new work. Study the scores at home, and be able·to give direction to your musicians the very first time they read the music. Bands are expected to play a wide range of musical styles these days. Marches, classical transcriptions, contemporary band composi-. tions, pop tunes, Broadway medleys and swing numbers are the meat and potatoes of band concerts. Both the conductor and musicians should be familiar with the playing styles of these types of music. Probably the failing that irks me the most is poorly played j¥Z and swing arrangements. This type of JAZZ AND BAND music is nearly impossible to pull off without a string bass (electric is a poor substitute, though better than using tuba cues) and a drumset player who is well versed in the style. Don't think that playing something faster makes it swing better. It doesn't. It just gets the piece over with faster so the listeners won'.t have to suffer through it. And another thing lacking in so much band concert repertoire today is solo numbers ~y players in the band. There are plenty of groups using guest soloists with the band, but the members of the band who have the talent for thiS type of playing need' the opportunity to shine. There. !feel much betternow. Take some or all of these suggestions and try them. The monetary cost is next to nothing, and the benefits potentially great. There are several band concerts worthy of your attention this month. Browse the Comprehensive Concert Listings commencing page 22. And don't forget to check out the Further Afield section (page 38-40), and the Jazz Listings (page 40-41) too .. If you would like an upcoming band event to be featured in the Bandstand column, feel free to contact Merlin at (416) 489-0275; by e-mail, merlinw@attcanada.ca; on the web, http: //members. attcanada. ca/ . -merlinw/. · Iii Long & McQuade - MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS• www.lon1•mcqu•d•.co SALES - RENTALS - REPAIRS - IN STORE FINANCING TRADES - USED INSTRUMENTS BOUGHT & SOLD Toronto North York Scarborough Oshawa Brampton Burlington 925 Bloor St.W. 2777 Steeles Av.W. 1133 Markham Rd . 380 Simcoe St.S. 370 Main St.N. 3180 Mainway Dr. (416)588-7886 (416)663-8612 (416)439-8001 (905)434-1612 (905)450-4334 (905)319-3330 Where the Music Begins. Toronto's Center for Clarinets and Oboes SALES * REPAIR * Warranty Repair Depot He:arr the colour of • April 1 -- May 7 200 2

Volume 26 (2020- )

Volume 26 Issue 1 - September 2020
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Volumes 21-25 (2015-2020)

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