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Venue:
St. Mark's Church1625 Locust Street
Philadelphia, PA Map
Price: $10 General Admission
Saturday, October 11, 2008 - 8:00pm

Anthony Braxton conducts Composition N.103 (for Seven Trumpets)

Free/Form: Composer Portrait: Anthony Braxton

Anthony Braxton, conductor
Taylor Ho Bynum, trumpet
Tim Byrnes, trumpet
Forbes Graham, trumpet
Sam Hoyt, trumpet
John McDonough, trumpet
Nicole Rampersaud, trumpet
Nate Wooley, trumpet

Ars Nova Workshop is honored to present two major compositions for brass ensembles conducted by Anthony Braxton, one of the most innovative and acclaimed living composers.

Anthony Braxton is widely and critically acclaimed as a seminal figure in the music of the late 20th and early 21st century. His work, both as saxophonist and composer, has broken new conceptual and technical ground in the trans-African and trans-European (a.k.a. "jazz" and "American Experimental") musical traditions in North America. Braxton's extensions of instrumental technique, timbre, meter and rhythm, voicing and ensemble make-up, harmony and melody, and improvisation and notation have revolutionized modern American music. Braxton's five decades worth of recorded output is kaleidoscopic and prolific, with well over 200 recordings to his credit. He has won prestigious awards and critical praise, including the MacArthur "Genius Grant" Fellowship, and is a tenured professor at Wesleyan University, one of the world's centers of world music.

Anthony Braxton's Composition N.103 (for seven trumpets) features 145 pages of notated music and choreography for seven costumed instrumentalists. Composed in 1983, the 45-minute piece was first performed in 2005, in a fully staged and costumed realization at Wesleyan University celebrating Braxton's 60th birthday. This ANW performance will be the Philadelphia premiere, and only the third performance anywhere of this major work. Costume design by Rosemary Kielnecker.

The performance of Anthony Braxton's brass music is made possible by a grant from the Philadelphia Music Project, a program of the Philadelphia Center for Arts and Heritage, funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts and administered by The University of the Arts.

This performance is part of ANW's Free/Form: Composer Portrait series.

Anthony Braxton conducts Composition N.169 (for Brass Quintet)
Anthony Braxton, conductor
Taylor Ho Bynum, trumpet
Nate Wooley, trumpet
Jeremy Thal, French horn
Reut Regev, trombone
Jay Rozen, tuba

Braxton’s Composition N.169 is one of the seminal pieces in the composer’s oeuvre, yet has never been performed by the intended instrumentation. Originally written for brass quintet (on swivel chairs), 169 consists of an hour of intense and unrelenting rhythmic complexity, contrasting with sections of lush, static harmonies. Braxton never found an ensemble brave enough to tackle the imposing piece, so instead has performed the work in configurations ranging from saxophone quartet to full orchestra. This ANW performance marks the second time this composition will be staged with its original instrumentation.