Creative Music Guild Collective Music Ensemble under the direction of Wayne Horvitz

Creative Music Guild Collective Music Ensemble

The Creative Music Guild Collective Music Ensemble is a 14 person ensemble of Portland improvisers, including Andre St. James (bass), Eric Eagle (drums), Andrew Oliver (piano), Farnell Newton (trumpet), Tom Barber (trumpet), David Jorgenson (trumpet), Lars Campbell (trombone), Nick Sweet (trombone), Tom Hill (trombone), Lee Elderton (clarinet), Noah Bernstein (soprano sax), Reed Wallsmith (alto sax), Joe Cunningham (tenor sax), and Bruce Withycombe (bari sax).

The group will be performing music composed and conducted by composer Wayne Horvitz. The instrumentation is similar to a traditional jazz big band. The charts are modified arrangements for large ensemble, but more modular in nature then traditional big band repertoire.

The original concept for this particular approach came about during a summer workshop for improvisers at the Cornish College of the Arts with Wayne Horvitz and John Hollenbeck. Mr. Horvitz explains:

“I had worked with the method known as conduction with Butch Morris for many years. Conduction is typically used in an improvised music context without written material. I was using some charts of mine, and incorporating the conduction language I had learned from Butch to try to introduce some other ideas as well. On the second day, feeling a little frustrated, I asked them to take out their pencils and put numbers by certain measures. This number system entered the lexicon of potential hand signals and constituted a major new source of language to work with. It was exciting to me in that it could be very free and malleable at some points but at other times could also work up a riff based music similar to the music of Charles Mingus or even Count Basie. Harmonically it was very gratifying to constantly be re-inventing the arrangements. Even when the players misinterpreted hand signals things would happen that could be taken advantage of and developed. I immediately brought the concept to a group of my favorite improvisers in Seattle and began doing a twice-monthly residency on Monday nights at the Royal Room."

The Royal Room Collective Music Ensemble subsequently performed at the Earshot Jazz Festival, will do a week residency at the Stone (NYC) in May of 2013 and a collaboration with Conduction maestro J.A. Deane at the Chapel in Seattle in May. Mr. Horvitz has also presented these pieces in concert with the jazz orchestras at Arizona State University, the University of Montana and Eastern Washington University.

Wayne Horvitz

Composer, pianist and keyboardist Wayne Horvitz performs extensively throughout Europe, Japan, and North America. He is leader and principal composer for the quartet Sweeter Than the Day in addition to Gravitas Quartet, and performs regularly as an improviser on both piano and electronics. Past ensembles include The President and the Horvitz, Morris, Previte Trio, Pigpen, Zony Mash, The New York Composers' Orchestra, Ponga and The Four Plus One Ensemble.

As a composer, Horvitz has been commissioned by The Kitchen, The Kronos Quartet, Brooklyn Academy of Music, New World Records, The Seattle Chamber Players and Earshot Jazz. He has received commissioning grants from Meet the Composer, The National Endowment for the Arts, Seattle Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs, The N.Y. State Arts Council, The Mary Flagler Carey Trust, The Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund and The Fund for U.S. Artists. Recent premieres include the V Series for chamber orchestra, Mountain Language for string quartet (2001) and Whispers, Hymns and a Murmur (2004) and These Hills of Glory (2006) for string quartet and soloist. He was awarded a Rockefeller MAP grant for the creation of Joe Hill: 16 Actions for Chamber Orchestra and Soloist (2004). He was awarded a MAP grant in 2010 for 55”Music and Dance In Concrete”. He is the recipient of the 2008 NEA American Masterpieces Award.

As a sideman and collaborator he has performed and recorded with Billy Bang, Carla Bley, Curlew, Marty Ehrlich, Bill Frisell, Fred Frith, Robin Holcomb, Butch Morris, David Moss, Bobby Previte, Elliott Sharp, Michael Shrieve, Kazutoki Umezu, Philip Wilson and John Zorn (Naked City, Cobra, etc.), among others. He has produced records for the World Saxophone Quartet, Human Feel, Marty Ehrlich, The Living Daylights, Bill Frisell, Robin Holcomb, Eddie Palmieri and local songwriters Cathy Croce, Karen Pernick and David Russell among others.

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Creative Music Guild Collective Music Ensemble under the direction of Wayne Horvitz

Sunday, February 17 · Doors 7:00 PM / Show 8:00 PM at The Secret Society