Discover Günter Raphael’s ballet, Jabonah

Günter Raphael’s (1903-1960) life was surrounded by war and upheaval. Born into a musical family in Germany, he entered the Hochschule für Musik in Berlin in 1922. In 1926 he became professor of composition and theory at State Conservatory and at the Kirchenmusikalisches Institut, Leipzig in 1926. But this was short lived. When Nazis assumedContinue reading “Discover Günter Raphael’s ballet, Jabonah”

Publisher Bill Holab Music is now in the database, discover works by Michael Daugherty, Michael Torke, and Jake Heggie

Bill Holab Music’s catalog is now listed in the database. Bill Holab publishes works by American composers like Michael Torke and Michael Daugherty. Daugherty was already listed in the database with his opera, Jackie O, published by Boosey & Hawkes. Here are some featured works from Bill Holab’s catalog. Date: 2012 Ballet: Labyrinth of LoveContinue reading “Publisher Bill Holab Music is now in the database, discover works by Michael Daugherty, Michael Torke, and Jake Heggie”

Listen to the Saxophone in Ambroise Thomas’s 1889 ballet, La Tempête

In 1889 Paris hosted the Exposition Universelle, a centennial celebration of the French Revolution. This was a showcase of the latest engineering marvels—the Eiffel Tower, technological advances—the telephone, and a showcase of the best of French culture. The Paris Opéra was slated to premiere Saint-Saëns’s newest opera, Ascanio, but the opera was not ready forContinue reading “Listen to the Saxophone in Ambroise Thomas’s 1889 ballet, La Tempête”

Another Romantic ballet featuring the saxophone: Discover Ambroise Thomas’s La tempête

Recently I went through the Metropolitan Opera’s archives to see if they have any works for saxophone in their performance history that I have yet to find. During this search, I discovered Ambroise Thomas‘s Hamlet was performed for their inaugural season in 1883-84. Did they use the saxophone in the finale of the 2nd actContinue reading “Another Romantic ballet featuring the saxophone: Discover Ambroise Thomas’s La tempête”

George Russell is now in the database

Composer, music theorist, jazz pianist George Russell (1923-2009) is now listed in the database. Russell is most known as a theorist, creating the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization (LLC) which became the backbone of modal jazz in the 1950s. In 1964, he left the states and settled in Sweden where he was able toContinue reading “George Russell is now in the database”

How opera is instrumental to the “Évolution” of vibrato

For saxophonists, playing with vibrato is second nature in classical performance. But up until the 1920s, most saxophonists played with an even tone. Vibrato on the saxophone was limited to jazz saxophonists and vaudeville stars. In 1928, Marcel Mule was in rehearsal for Edouard L’Enfant’s ballet, Évolution and he had a breakthrough. What if heContinue reading “How opera is instrumental to the “Évolution” of vibrato”

Musica Brasilis is now added to the database

Brazilian music publisher, Musica Bralisis is now listed in the database. Musica Brasilis documents the long rich history of Brazilian music beginning in the 1500s. The website includes downloadable scores, videos, and soundclips documenting over 100 years of Brazilian recorded music. Searching for operas, I was listening to choros, tangos, bossa novas, and sambas listedContinue reading “Musica Brasilis is now added to the database”

Sidney Bechet’s ballet “La Nuit Est Une Sorcière” is now listed in the database

Soprano Saxophonist and New Orleans native Sidney Bechet (1897-1957) is now listed in the database. Bechet wrote the ballet, La Nuit Est Une Sorcière, while he was living in Paris in the 1950s. The ballet received mixed reviews when it premiered in 1953. The mixture of classical and jazz themes confused the audience. Even moreContinue reading “Sidney Bechet’s ballet “La Nuit Est Une Sorcière” is now listed in the database”

William Grant Still is now in the Database

Composer William Grant Still (1895-1978), long considered “Dean of African-American Classical Composers” is now listed in the database. Still is known for inserting African-American folk songs and spirituals into his compositions. Two ballets are listed in the database, 1937’s Lenox Avenue and 1941’s Miss Sally’s Party. In Lenox Avenue, Still called for 3 saxophonists, Alto, Alto/Bari,Continue reading “William Grant Still is now in the Database”

Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet, now streaming on Operavision

Sergei Prokofiev’s 1936 masterpiece, Romeo and Juliet, is now streaming on Operavision. This new production is from the Polish National Ballet. It will be streaming until 8/16/21. Romeo and Juliet has a well known tenor saxophone solo, you can hear it in at minute 26:35 during the “Montagues and Capulets” scene, one of it’s mostContinue reading “Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet, now streaming on Operavision”