ROVA:Orkestrova Presents John Coltrane's Electric Ascension, Philadelphia, Feb 10, 2007


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As part of the 5 Concert Series, Seraphic Light: Celebrating John Coltrane's 80th Birthday, Ars Nova Workshop and International House Philadelphia present the world-renowned improvisational group ROVA Saxophone Quartet in an exclusive performance of John Coltrane's “Ascension." rearranged in electrifying style on Saturday, February 10, 2007. Famed for its monumental scale and raw emotional power, John Coltrane's “Ascension" has been rearranged by Rova's Larry Ochs and Jon Raskin to be performed by a “dream team" of master improvisers featuring the ROVA Saxophone Quartet, Wilco- guitarist Nels Cline, famed drummer Andrew Cyrille, violinists Carla Kilhstedt and Jenny Scheinman, electric bassist Trevor Dunn, Marina Rosenfeld on turntables and dub plates and Andrea Parkins on electric accordion and laptop electronics.

In 1965, shortly after receiving “Artist of the Year" and “Best Tenor Saxophonist" honors in Down Beat magazine, John Coltrane recorded his daring, monumental “Ascension" -- the fifty-minute, large-ensemble piece that challenged audiences with passages of intense group improvisation and powerful solos. With dense harmonies and explosive dialogues between soloists and rhythm section, “Ascension" is now widely regarded as Coltrane's masterwork. Originally featuring important improvisers such as Archie Shepp, Pharoah Sanders, McCoy Tyner and Elvin Jones, “Ascension" was an ambitious and visionary statement unlike any other composition. Now forty years old, Coltrane's “Ascension" is renowned among large ensemble jazz works for its monumental scale, raw emotional power, and historic importance to the evolution of improvised music.

“Electric Ascension" is a contemporary reworking of this profound piece led by the world-renowned Rova Saxophone Quartet. Since 1977, Rova has fundamentally extended the horizons of modern jazz. With their potent mix of stellar musicianship and compositional creativity, Rova explores the synthesis of composition and collective improvisation. The group has also collaborated with and commissioned over 30 new works for saxophone quartet from artists as aesthetically diverse as minimalist composers Terry Riley and Pauline Oliveros, avant-garde composers Fred Frith and Anthony Braxton, experimental rock musician Lindsay Cooper, and jazz luminaries Jack DeJohnette and John Carter. For there first official performance in Philadelphia, the are joined by some of the most exciting improvisors today, including Wilco guitarist Nels Cline, Fantomas/Mr. Bungle bassist Trevor Dunn, Tin Hat Trio's Carla Kihlstedt, and Free Jazz veteran Andrew Cyrille.

Saturday, February 10, 2007, 8:00pm
Rova: Orkestrova = Electric Ascension
With Rova Saxophone Quartet; Nels Cline, electric guitar; Jenny Sheinmann, violin; Carla Kihlstedt, violin/efx; Andrea Parkins, keyboards/electronics; Marina Rosenfeld, turntables/ efx; Trevor Dunn, electric bass; and Andrew Cyrille, drums
International House, Philadelphia, 3701 Chestnut Street 215.387.5125, www.ihousephilly.org

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