score & parts
About the work
Composed for the Bristol branch of ‘CoMA’, Jazz Suite is a collection of three jazz-inspired dances, each with a distinct characteristic variable. The first movement, Swing, imitates the rhythmic antiphony of big-band jazz, while having no definite pitches. It also calls on the players to listen and respond to their counterparts in an open solo section. The second movement, Waltz, explores modal jazz harmony. Though its melody has definite pitches and shape, its transposition and concurrent harmonization is changeable throughout. The final movement, Samba, combines the characteristics of the previous two movements. The timbre of each rhythmic interjection is defined by the players’ chosen pitch, highlighting some patterns over others.
In all, the work seeks to combine aspects of jazz with notions of indeterminacy, while serving as an enjoyable exercise in ensemble playing and improvisation.
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