Program Book 2001-2002 page 27
The Mid-Winter Blues Program Notes, cont.

where he studied with William Albright, George Wilson, and Pulitzer Prize winners Leslie Bassett and William Balcom. His works are published by Manhattan Beach Music, Encore Music, and PP Music Publishers, and are recorded on the labels of Koch International Classics, Klavier, and Mark Records.

Out of the Blue is, above all, a celebration of rhythm. Almost every bar in the piece contains one form of syncopation or another. I was well aware of the risk involved by having too much of a good thing - constant syncopation could easily begin to sound square - but I had to discover for myself just how far my obsession could be taken. What resulted is, for me, an urgent, jazzy, hyperactive energy - sometimes raucous, other times explosive, always free-wheeling. Out of the Blue was composed for the Prism Saxophone Quartet, who gave the premiere performance at Christ & St. Stephen's Church in New York City, June 20, 2000. This work was commissioned through American Ensembles: A Musical Celebration of the Millennium a special project of Chamber Music America, with funding provided by The National Endowment for the Arts, the Helen F. Whitaker Fund, and the Chamber Music America Fund.

DAVE BRUBECK (1920- ) is a distinguished composer, pianist and jazz legend. Together with alto saxophonist Paul Desmond, drummer Joe Morello, and bassist Eugene Wright, this group quickly achieved popular success as the Dave Brubeck Quartet. They helped to reawaken public interest in jazz after World War II and produced works like Blue Rondo a la Turk and Take Five. This music introduced unusual time signatures to previously unexplored regions of jazz.

Brubeck has written many large scale works including two ballets, a musical, an oratorio, four cantatas, and a mass. A recipient of four honorary degrees, Brubeck has organized several new quartets and continues to perform throughout the world.

THELONIOUS SPHERE MONK (1920-1982) At a time when pianists were practicing in order to play with maximum speed, Monk was inventing a new approach to the instrument. Thelonious Monk's style is heavily dependent on his rhythmic virtuosity and inventiveness. Monk sacrificed techniques of manual dexterity for techniques of expressiveness. A master of displaced accents, shifting meters, and anticipations, he shared similarities with Miles Davis. Davis and Monk were more than comfortable with the effective pause, and thoughtful use of space, rest, and silence.

Amherst Saxophone Quartet Program Book Program Notes