Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Do you have "improvisation"?

On Saturday, our organization had the pleasure of hosting the trio Time for Three on our Kitchen Sink Series.  Violinist Nick Kendall said it best when he acknowledged that Kitchen Sink was an appropriate moniker to describe Time for Three’s music.  Just like the performance series, which includes “everything and the…” (since we do indeed have a sink in front of the theater), Time for Three’s music incorporates such a broad range of musical styles that it defies any particular genre definition.  Selections of the trio’s arrangements for Saturday evening’s concert included something of a mash-up of Stravinsky’s “Firebird” with Katy Perry’s “Firework,” U2’s “With or Without You,” some musical jokes in a thoroughly entertaining arrangement of Brahms’ “Hungarian Dance #5,” and a beautifully arranged finale of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”

Not only did the patrons get an exciting concert (truly, I loved being able to see many faces from where I was seated and this audience was *into* it!), but we were delighted to have Nick Kendall, Zach De Pue, and Ranaan Meyer sit down with a small number local musicians earlier in the afternoon for a discussion about composing and arranging.  The takeaways from this “meeting of the minds” can be crystalized into a few sound bites for me.  “Do you have improvisation?” (as if improvisation was a horrible disease!) was a humorous reference that emerged in discussing the sometimes systematic and creativity-stifling improvisation process.  And “getting in the Jeep” was an already-established reference the trio had for Kendall’s “off-roading” with a musical piece to take it to new, interesting places.

The round-table format for this discussion was a new venture for our organization.  We hope it can have great value to our local arts community to provide whatever resources we can to those in our community who are already doing great artistic and creative work.

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