Tomorrow at New York’s The Stone begins the three day Bagatelles By Night program marking on New Year’s Eve the end this year’s premier performances of The Bagatelles, new compositions of American composer John Zorn.
The word bagatelle means short, unpretentious instrumental composition, which in case of John Zorn its 300 short pieces he wrote between March and May this year, which, like the compositions of his famous Masada collection, are short compositions for different ensembles – they should be imagined like compact tunes written on a single staff, but packed with harmonic, melodic and rhythmic information. “The idea is that performers take a Bagatelle, and like improvising jazz musicians, make a full piece of it.”, he explained.
Violinist Mark Feldman and pianist Sylvie Courvoisier were the first to perform compositions from The Bagatelles collection on 05 July at The Stone. One hour premier performances of The Bagatelles concerts with different ensembles continued since then every Sunday at 15.00.
Bagatelles world premiers at The Stone were introduced in the past months by many important protagonists of New York’s downtown scene, some of which we had the chance to listen to in previous years at the Jazz Fest, names like Mark Feldman, Craig Taborn, Mark Helias, Ikue Mori, Ben Perowski, Marc Ribot… In the next three days Bagatelles By Night compositions will be played by guitarists Matt Hollenberg, Nick Millevoi, Julian Lage, Gyan Riley, Will Greene and Marc Ribot, basists Johnny DeBlase and Simon Hanes and drummers Kenny Grohowski and Aaron Edgcom.
Bagatelles By Night program at The Stone continues on the 01, 02 and 03 January when Zorn’s Bagatelles will be brought by pianist Jamie Saft, bassist Brad Jones, drummer Kenny Wollesen and saxophonist and clarinetist Chris Speed, by Brian Marsell performing solo on piano and the cello duo Erik Freidlander and Michael Nicolas.
The Sunday Afternoon Bagatelles program at The Stone will continue until the end of February next year.
John Zorn has appeared on more than 400 releases as composer or performer. This multi-instrumentalist is one of this year’s two nominees for the Pulitzer Prize for music for his classical piece The Aristos.