Kevin Burns


Kevin Burns a choisi d'interpréter:
Kevin Burns has chosen to perform:

Karel Husa

Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Band

[saxophone alto, percussion and piano / alto saxophone, percussion and piano]

avec la participation de:
with the pariticipation of:

Cynthia Lees, percussion

Nadine Shank, piano

Kevin Burns is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at Louisiana State University. Most recently he was a semi-finalist in the Concert Artists Guild Competition in New York City. As a winner in the LSU concerto competition, he performed the Concerto for AIto Swcophone and Wind Orchestra by Ingolf Dahl with the LSU Philharmonia. At the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition he was a semi-finalist with the LSU Saxophone Quartet. He has performed with the Baton Rouge Symphony, the Louisiana State University Symphony, Philharmonia, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, New Music Ensemble, Chamber Winds, and Saxophone Quartet, as well as with numerous other ensembles in his native Massachusetts. He has performed on the LSU Festival of Contemporary Music and as a guest artist with composers Dinu Ghezzo and David Ward-Steinman, and at the Northeast and South Central meetings of the North American Saxophone Alliance.

Mr. Burns received the bachelor of music education degree, cum laude, from the University of Massachusetts where he studied with Lynn Klock. His masters degree in saxophone performance is from Louisiana State University where he studied with Griffin Campbell.

Kevin Burns donnera également une conférence intitulée:
Kevin Burns will also present a conference entitled:

A Performer's Analysis of Karel Husa's Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Concert Band

This analysis of Karel Husa's Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Concert Band will help other saxophonists understand the piece and give a better performance. In the process of analysis, I will reveal the spirit of the work. Conveying the spirit of a composition requires the accurate playing of notes, but it also requires a deeper insight into the work which is the result of intuition and skilled analysis.

In addition to revealing the spirit of a piece, analysis may reveal the quality. First, one has to understand the spirit, and then from this knowledge the quality can be assessed. Is Husa's concerto a good piece of music that is worth performing? It certainly is technically challenging, but does this give it quality? As one arrives at a deeper understanding of the spirit and many elements of the work through analysis, she/he is able to appreciate it on a higher level and better answer these questions.

Form is the most revealing aspect of analysis. All the other elements of music; rhythm, melody, harmony, dynamics, and tempo etc., articulate the form. The elements that are most distinctive in articulating the form in this concerto are: tonal pillars (these are points in the music that use tonal language and/or cadence on a tonic or dominant), register (especially the use of altissimo), tempo (slow-fast-slow design of the movements), and dynamics (loud-to-soft overall motion of the piece).

Husa's rhythmic writing in this concerto is often non-metrical and without pulse. Husa accomplishes this style of writing by avoiding emphasis or accent on the downbeat, and by subdividing the beat in many different ways so that a sense of pulse is lost. The next area of analysis is performance practice. Rather than discuss in detail the technical aspects of how to perform certain saxophone techniques, this section will focus on interpretive issues. Dynamic should be interpreted in such a way that the spirit of the work is conveyed without making bad sounds. Husa calls for an extreme in dynamics which will may consequently lead to a bad tone and poor intonation. The dynamic markings must be understood in relation to the dynamics of I the whole piece. Also, they should not be played to an extreme where good intonation is sacrificed.

In conclusion, playing this concerto requires more than an accurate reading of notes. The saxophonist must uncover the spirit of the work through skilled analysis and then apply this knowledge to her/his performance. If this is done, then the quality and value of this concerto will be conveyed.

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