Breaking (2011) John Fitz Rogers (b. 1963)
AYRES based on songs of John Dowland (2011) Katherine Hoover (b. 1937)
Can She Excuse My Wrongs
Weep No More Sad Fountains
Fine Knacks for Ladies
Flash (2014) Mark Lanz Weiser (b. 1968)
High Velocity (2012) Mark Lanz Weiser (b. 1968)
Pieces of Sanity (2007) Stacy Garrop (b. 1969)
ABOUT THE COMPOSITIONS
Breaking (2011) by John Fitz Rogers (b. 1963)
Breaking is a suite of ten short character pieces, each of which portrays a different idea of “breaking.” The movements range from bold and joyous (break open, break into, break away); to fragile and fractured (break with, break off, break up); to shades of dark and light (break down, break through); to lyrical (break free); to playful (break in – which borrows musical ideas from Anton Webern's Symphony, Opus 21). The work also exploits various kinds of saxophone techniques, including alternate fingerings (break with) and jazz idioms (break into, break down).
Breaking was commissioned by Christopher Creviston, Clifford Leaman, Joseph Lulloff and David Stambler, and premiered by Christopher and Hannah Creviston in the WMP Concert Hall (NYC) on February 24th, 2012.
Base Two Publishing
Flash (2014) by Mark Lanz Weiser (b. 1968)
Flash was composed for soprano saxophonist Christopher Creviston. It was written to highlight Creviston’s astounding virtuosity and exquisite lyricism. Each of the four movements of Flash represents a different musical impression of the word flash, and the titles of each movement are themselves synonyms.
The first movement, Blink, opens with a solo for the soprano saxophone, incorporating quick moving scales, high staccato notes, and growls, as if taunting the piano to join in – which it does, playing fortissimo sustained octaves. The movement culminates in a chase between the two instruments, with fast scales running up to the highest register of each instrument and fading off, pianissimo. The light-hearted second movement, Sparkle, is a whimsical dialog between the saxophone and piano. The third movement, Blaze is rhythmic and aggressive, driving forward in non-stop, perpetual motion. Flash concludes with Shimmer, a quiet meditative movement that incorporates long, cantabile saxophone lines supported by high, staggered chords in the piano.
Flash was commissioned by Christopher Creviston, and premiered by Christopher and Hannah Creviston in Katzin Concert Hall at Arizona State University on April 7, 2015.
AYRES based on songs of John Dowland (2011) by Katherine Hoover (b. 1937)
A few months ago I heard a recording of a soprano saxophone played in a cathedral, and I was struck by its beautiful vocal quality. I wanted to write something that would bring out this quality in a way that the saxophone is not generally used. Elizabethan lute songs have always moved me, with their extended phrases and haunting melodies, abd John Dowland was the master of this style. After going through numerous pieces, I chose three. I have treated them in somewhat varying ways: counterpoint in the first, some variations in the second, and rhythmic play in the last, always being informed by the original song and/or words. These songs were commonly called Airs, or “Ayres”, in the spelling of the time.
AYRES was commissioned by James Forger and Christopher Creviston, and premiered by Christopher and Hannah Creviston in the WMP Concert Hall (NYC) on February 24, 2012.
High Velocity (2012) by Mark Lanz Weiser (b. 1968)
High Velocity was written for pianist Hannah Creviston in the summer of 2012. The piece was inspired by a motorcycle ride on the famous Angeles Crest Highway in Southern California. Known for its hairpin turns, dizzying heights, and (inadvisable) motorist speeds, Angeles Crest is one of the most exhilaration and challenging motorways in the United States.
In the same vein, High Velocity opens with quick, fast changing scales that exploit the entire range of the keyboard. These scales are then interrupted by a burst of chords before settling into the second, more lyric theme. This theme emerges in the lower range of the piano while the surrounding texture dances around the middle and high registers of the instrument. The section concludes with accented lower octaves and scales before ending in a flurry of rapidly alternating chords between the two hands, which leads into the development section.
There is a stretch of road along the route of Angeles Crest that runs straight and parallel to some majestic mountains, allowing the motorist to relax and admire the breath-taking scenery. In the development of High Velocity, there is a quiet passage where the piano texture becomes blurred and less active. A lyric, elongated and reflective melody emerges from this texture, representing the stillness of that beautiful stretch of highway. After this melody builds to a climax, the music returns to its energetic opening texture. The scales become increasingly active and the register moves progressively upward until the piece ends on the highest C of the piano’s keyboard.
The piece was premiered by Hannah Creviston in Katzin Concert Hall at Arizona State University on February 3, 2013.
Pieces of Sanity (2007) by Stacy Garrop (b. 1969)
Pieces of Sanity, for alto saxophone and piano, contains five miniatures. Each short movement represents a frozen snapshot of a particular state of mind. We follow the protagonist as he experiences five states: Rage and Despair (movements 1 and 2) give way to Euphoria (movement 3); Possessed (movement 4) culminates into Stoic (movement 5).
Pieces of Sanity was commissioned by Christopher Creviston, and premiered by Christopher and Hannah Creviston in Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall (NYC) on December 3, 2007.
Inkjar Publishing Company
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Brass Violin (2013) by Christopher Creviston (b. 1968)
Brass Violin was originally just a few warm up noodles used to test the range, timbre and flexibility of a reed. At the suggestion of several students, these noodles were written down to become a virtuosic etude, suitable for performance. The title comes from a comment made by Angel Negrin. The piece was premiered by Eddie Goodman as a part of the University of Michigan Collage Concert in Hill Auditorium on January 25, 2014.
Available for free download at www.ChristopherCreviston.com.