The use of the saxophone in the dramatic music of Leonard Bernstein

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Wayne Eric Gargrave (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Steven Stusek

Abstract: "This largely descriptive document examines the writing for saxophone in Bernstein's dramatic works for the stage. In looking at the scores for West Side Story, Wonderful Town, On the Town, Mass, and A White House Cantata , elements of musicianship and style that confront the player who is seeking an informed performance of Bernstein's work are discussed, as well as appropriate technical approaches for accomplishing a successful performance. Of primary consideration are performance practice concerns such as phrasing, articulation, and tone color appropriate for the various styles of music Bernstein writes in his eclectic music, as well as score knowledge and elements of playing in orchestra such as balance and blend with other instruments. The result is demonstrated with edited musical excerpts and accompanying annotations, and the conclusions drawn are supported by interviews with prominent New York-Broadway theater performers. The study does not address concerns regarding the various arrangements of these works for orchestra, band, or chamber group. Additionally this research does not address other works of his that utilize the saxophone, such as the film score to On The Waterfront and Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs for solo clarinet and jazz ensemble. Also delimited will be issues such as 'doubling' other instruments, matters of playing specific saxophones, or saxophone equipment. In addition to the major thrust of the study, an up-to-date survey of scholarship and related research on Leonard Bernstein is presented, as well as a complete edition of the saxophone parts for each score are included for further study and practice."--Abstract from author supplied metadata.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2006
saxaphone, Leonard Berstein, West Side Story, Wonderful Town, On the Town, Mass, A White House Cantata, technical approaches
Bernstein, Leonard,--1918-1990--Criticism and interpretation.
Bernstein, Leonard,--1918-1990-- Musicals--Selections.
Saxophone--Instruction and study.

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