Webber/Morris Big Band
Feature Performance by EtM Composer in Residence Anna Webber
Jun 9 2019
Please join us on Sunday June 9th at 3pm for the big band performance by co-composers Angela Morris and Anna Webber, the 2019 EtM ConEdison Composer in Residence at the Queens Museum.
“…a jagged-edged band that has begun to turn musicians’ heads.”
—Giovanni Russonello, New York Times
Nineteen musicians from the New York improvised community play music by conductor-composer-tenor saxophonists Anna Webber and Angela Morris. The specific gifts of this generation of jazz musicians, who are as adept at angular notated polyrhythms as free improvisation (not to mention everything in between), informed the composers as they wrote this program over the past five years. The pieces draw on poetry, early blues, games of chance, number theory, and semi-harrowing life experiences. In the spirit of their mentors, Darcy James Argue and John Hollenbeck, Webber and Morris compose music that blurs the line between composed and improvised sections while maintaining a strong narrative arc. This performance is a precursor to the band’s debut album, which will be released on Greenleaf Music in 2020.
Angela Morris, Anna Webber – Conductor/Composer/Woodwinds; Jay Rattman, Charlotte Greve, Adam Schneit, Lisa Parrott – Woodwinds; Tim Vaughn, Nick Grinder, Jen Baker, Reginald Chapman – Trombones; John Lake, Kenny Warren, Adam O’Farrill, Jake Henry – Trumpets; Dustin Carlson – Guitar; Patricia Brennan – Vibraphone; Marc Hannaford – Piano; Adam Hopkins – Bass; Jeff Davis – Drums
Anna Webber is a New York-based flutist, saxophonist, and composer whose interests and work live the overlap between avant-garde jazz and new classical music. Her new album, Clockwise, featuring a septet comprised of several of the most creative musicians working in New York’s avant-garde, will be released on Pi Recordings in February 2019. Webber’s other projects include her Simple Trio, with John Hollenbeck and Matt Mitchell, and a big band co-led with Angela Morris. She has performed and/or recorded with projects led by artists such as Dan Weiss, Jen Shyu, Matt Mitchell, Ches Smith, John Hollenbeck, and Geof Bradfield, among others. Webber is a 2018 Guggenheim Fellow. She has additionally been awarded grants from the Shifting Foundation (2015) and residencies from the MacDowell Colony (2017), the Millay Colony for the Arts(2015), and the Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts (2014). In 2014 she won the BMI Foundation Charlie Parker Composition Prize as a member of the BMI Jazz Composers’ Workshop. Webber is originally from British Columbia.
If Brooklyn’s music circles draw a Venn diagram, saxophonist-composer Angela Morris thrives in the loop between avant-jazz and pop. Originally from Toronto, Canada and based in NYC, she has performed throughout North America and Europe. Her vocal group Rallidae released their new album, Turned, and Was, in November 2016 on the NYC-based label Gold Bolus Recordings; their debut Paper Birds was praised as “an exceptional debut by and exciting and innovative new band.” Morris is a member Motel and TMT Trio, two collaborative trios that have respectively released albums in 2017: like you always do, I always did too by Motel (Prom Night Records), and Star Ballad by TMT Trio. Morris composes and co-leads several groups, including a 17-piece big band – she is an alumna of the BMI Jazz Composer’s Workshop lead by Jim McNeely and studied composition with the Grammy-nominated jazz composer Darcy James Argue. In addition to her own projects, she performs with Helado Negro, Jason Ajemian’s Folk-Lords, Myra Melford, and Jessica Pavone.
More about their collaborative work here: Morris/Webber
The EtM Con Edison Composer Residencies program is funded by Consolidated Edison, the George L. Shields Foundation, AOH Foundation, The Reed Foundation and individuals. This program is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.
This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.
photo credit by Wolf Daniel, courtesy of Roulette Intermedium