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Octet for Four Players

Octet for Four Players

Anixter, Russ


  • Ensemble: Mixed Chamber Ensemble
  • Genre: Modern Classical
  • Grade: 5
  • Duration: 13.0 minutes
  • Catalog Number: AOS867

“Octet for Four Players” was written for the 2006 Alfred Loeffler New Music Symposium at California State University, Chico. I had been fooling around on an electric bass trying to play “Black Market” by Weather Report. When I was looking for some motifs for this composition the bass line to Black Market kept finding its way into my left hand on the piano so I altered it to create a starting point for this piece. Next I came up with a complimentary motif for the right hand. The piece evolved into a double theme and variation with the themes appearing together or separately throughout the composition. Any influences of Latin music in the piece are a result of working on the ill-fated Broadway show, “The Mambo Kings”. The orchestration for a very small wind ensemble with each player doubling instruments is the instrumentation of the “house band” at Anixter Rice Music Service. The piece features a candenza for each of the four players, and there is a homage to “Black Market” in one of the cadenzas.

Player 1:  Flute + Alto Sax

Player 2:  Bassoon + Baritone Sax

Player 3:  Trumpet + Flugelhorn

Player 4:  Tenor Trombone + Bass Trombone

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