Rise Up, Singing

duration: 8:00
instrumentation: Alto Saxophone, Cello
premiere: March 25, 2018 // Now Hear This Festival // Yardbird Suite, Edmonton, AB
premiere performer: UltraViolet (Allison Balcetis, alto saxophone; Amy Nicholson, cello)
publisher: A-Town Publications (ASCAP) © 2018

Rise Up Singing was revised for UltraViolet Now Hear This in 2018. For the original version (Bb clarinet + cello), click HERE

Performance Note:
Rise Up, Singing (rev. 2018) for alto saxophone and cello, was originally for Bb clarinet and cello. Motivated by the 1958 Verve recording of “Summertime” (from Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess) sung by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong. The most striking quality of this recording is the way the vocalists so skillfully pit the natural qualities and inclinations of their voices against the harmony to create moments of incredible beauty. I attempted to achieve a similar result here, by placing the clarinet and cello in moments of rhythmic and dynamic flux with the moving harmonic line, all the while relying on timbral qualities to create another layer of interplay. —Erin Rogers (2018)

“A particularly harmonious piece was “Rise Up, Singing,” by Erin Rogers. Inspired by the jazz classic “Summertime,” as performed by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, Rogers conveyed a decidedly more somber tone in her composition. The chords were regularly extended on the cello, a challenge that the cellist, Amy Nicholson, met with extraordinary technique. However, the way the chords were stretched out made it feel much more unnatural, uncomfortable, and dark than Armstrong and Fitzgerald’s original piece.”
—Alexander Cook, The Gateway [Full article]

purchase Sheet Music: Rise Up, Singing (asax/vc)