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Dave Anderson

Dave Anderson: Dance Suite for double bass and harp

Dave Anderson: Dance Suite for double bass and harp

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About the Composition

This piece is dedicated to my wonderful wife, Catherine who is a fantastic harpist. As a composer, I am very lucky to have close contact with a musician who plays one of the most difficult instruments to compose for... so we HAD to get married!

This Suite is modeled after the Baroque form I have admired such as any of the 6 Bach Cello Suites or the Bach Orchestral Suites. The Prelude contains hints of each following movements. The Malaguana is based on the old and much slower style of early Latin music that has freedom of syncopation and lyric influence rather than the modern one that is much faster.

Next is another ancient dance influenced by the “medicine man” physical cure for a poisonous bite which was to move and/or dance in a fast feverish movement which led to the development of the Tarantella dance. Gliere has written a Tarantella for bass and my version has some reference to it. The Sarabande is a slow phrasing strength to the 2nd or 3rd beat rather than the downbeat in a lyric manner. Frank Proto, a wonderful bassist, composer, teacher, and mentor to me has been an inspiration to keep writing for the bass so I have dedicated a movement to him as Blues for Frank which has improvisation and jazz phrasing. The Rondo is one of my favorite dance and composition forms (ABACADA...etc), and I try to compress each returning A section.

This Dance Suite is one of the pieces I lost in Hurricane Katrina, but, in a good way, I have now had the time to revise it to an excellent piece ready for publication.

About the Composer

Dave Anderson has been Principal Bass with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra since 1996,  and the Britt Festival Orchestra since 1994. He has performed extensively with many diverse ensembles including the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Louisville Orchestra, Aspen Festival, Chautauqua (NY) Festival, Colorado Philharmonic (NRO), Colorado Music Festival, the LaSalle Quartet, and as a soloist with Richard Stoltzman, Gene Bertoncini, Nigel Kennedy, Bobby McFerrin, Doc Severinsen, and many others.

Anderson is an internationally acclaimed composer of orchestral and chamber works, with performances around the world shared on YouTube. His Concerto for Double Bass, Strings & Harp, was commissioned and premiered by the Philadelphia Orchestra with Principal Bassist Hal Robinson and Wolfgang Sawallisch conducting.

Also a prolific jazz and funk bassist, Anderson has jammed with The Radiators, Walter “Wolfman” Washington, Roy Pope, Darryl Brown, and many other great New Orleans musicians including a killer performance with guitarist Brian Stoltz of the Funky Meters as a main highlight of the French Quarter Festival.

I began writing in 1984, while a student at Cincinnati Conservatory, seeing the need for works for solo bass. Frank Proto, my mentor and teacher at CCM, was a great influence on my early years of composition, inspiring me with his prolific creativity and endless versatility to write in many different styles of music.

He encouraged me to study orchestration and texture in scores of Mahler, Respighi, and Rimsky-Korsakov. I grew up hearing all the masters under the baton of George Szell and Lorin Maazel conducting the Cleveland Orchestra, as my father, Ed Anderson, was their Bass Trombonist for over 20 years.

Elliot Carter, Prokofiev, Mahler, Stravinsky and Shostakovich have had the greatest influence on my writing. I had the privilege to show my early String Symphony and Bass Concerto to Maxim Shostakovich, and was delighted he recognized his father’s spirit in my pieces.

My works also incorporate funk, jazz, and blues styles. I have finished several commissions, including Nonet, a work for the Musaica Chamber Ensemble. A new CD has been released and the score and parts will soon be available. 


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