What Kind of Music Do You Play To This Artwork? PART I

I had a wonderful and gratifying musical experience on Saturday, August 11 when I performed music to accompany art. My brother is a visual artist and was part of a three person exhibition at the Perkins Center for the Arts in Collingswood, New Jersey (just outside of Philadelphia).

While on a family vacation earlier in the summer we brainstormed about collaborating, and came up with some ideas on how I could perform in and around the artworks on display. I looked at some images from the exhibit and started practicing some composed pieces that I thought would relate well. Since it would be solo saxophone I quickly decided that I wanted to provide a variety of timbres by performing on all four of the more common saxophones - soprano, alto, tenor, and baritone. I then decided that in case I couldn't find something already written that would compliment the artworks on display that I would also be prepared to improvise and allow the artwork to inspire me. This would make it my first performance ever where I played all four saxophone AND performed both improvised and composed music.

I posted some of the art images on FACEBOOK and asked for some ideas on what instrument to use and what storyline might accompany each work; I had some insightful and interesting responses (thank you)!

The day before the performance I meet my brother at the gallery and we spent three hours discussing possibilities and trying out different combinations of music and art. Our performance program and order came together that evening and we jotted down on a scrap piece of paper. We decided that I would play one composed and one improvised piece in three locations which would be in close proximity to each of the artists work.

We decided that I would begin by performing "Melodies for Saxophone" by Philip Glass on the baritone saxophone on the second floor loft where viewers could see me from the gallery floor. That was followed by performing "Balfon from Neuf Etudes" by Christian Lauba and an improvisation in the center of two curving 20 foot drawings.

Unfortunately a train went by during the first piece but here is a video of the improvisation:

Please feel free to "LIKE", comment and share this video!
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