Rova performing at Rova:Arts’ outdoor summer event: New Music on the Mountain
Since 1986, when Rova:Arts was first incorporated, the organization has produced
at least one special event in the Bay Area annually. Most of these concert-events
include the members of Rova Saxophone Quartet and other special guests. The guests
have been chosen based on one of three criterion:
- to introduce the artists themselves or some lesser-known aspect of the artist’s
oeuvre to the Rova fan base and/or to the Bay Area.
- To collaborate with Rova on a special collaboration dreamed up by one or more
members of Rova
- To compose a commissioned work for Rova Saxophone Quartet or for Rova plus other
artists, usually including the composer
Since the turn of the century, these special performances have generally fallen
under three series titles:
- Rovaté: an annual event produced especially for Bay Area
audiences where large works for Rova plus guests are first rehearsed and performed
in anticipation of export to the USA and beyond.
2006: produced The
Glass Head in collaboration with primary artist - dancer Shinichi
Iova Koga and his performance group, inkBoat, also including dancer
Yuko Kaseki, media designer Eric Koziol, and director Ernie Lafky
2005: produced The
Mirror World, an evening length work by Larry Ochs for 17 Bay Area musicians.
The evening included films by Stan Brakhage, whose films inspired the music, and
to whomThe Mirror World is dedicated.
2003: produced Electric
Ascension, the John Coltrane masterwork re-imagined for an electric ensemble
of internationally known improvisers. Also produced a concert of Steve Lacy music
rearranged for septet by Bruce Ackley…
2002: produced An
Alligator in Your Wallet, with music commissioned by Rova:Arts and composed
for big band by Steve Adams and pianist Satoko Fujii
2001: formed an OrkestRova of Bay Area luminaries to perform
a commissioned work by legendary trumpeter and composer Wadada Leo Smith; commissioned
composer John Schott to compose a set-long work including fragments of early Rova-composed
works and arranged for a septet of his choosing.
Cheryl Leonard’s setup for her music with natural objects
2000: the legendary Sam Rivers and his trio join Rova and
local musicians to form a big band that performed the premiere of Sam Rivers’ Maelstrom.
Also premieres of commissioned works for Rova from Bay Area composers Miya Masaoka
and John Schott.
- New Music on the Mountain: an outdoor new music concert taking
place in the beautiful amphitheater carved out of the top of Mt. Tamalpais in Marin
County. This event featured Rova performing as a quartet plus guest artists from
the Bay Area and beyond, usually with the idea of introducing the musician himself,
or some aspect of the aritist’s acoustic repertoire that is heard infrequently,
to the Rova:Arts fan base. Guests have included Cheryl Leonard, Fred Frith, Joan
Jeanrenaud, Carla Kihlstedt, India Cooke, Vinny Golia, Wadada Leo Smith, Darren
Johnston, and more
- Art of the Improviser: in this series, the Rova members hook
up with 5 to 7 other improvisers for evenings of small ensemble and large ensemble
free improvisations. Guests have included Vinny Golia, Nels Cline, Sarah Schoenbeck,
Harris Eisenstadt, Ches Smith, George Cremaschi, Theresa Wong, Bill Horvitz and
Cheryl Leonard performing at New Music on the Mountain 2004