52nd Street and the 2nd Viennese
Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies
Arts and Humanities
Jazz artists continuously push the harmonic, melodic, and rhythmic boundaries of the music which they compose and perform. This is accomplished in a variety of ways, from increasingly complex chord substitutions in standards, to the harmolodic explorations of Ornette Coleman, and the atonal excursions of Jaki Byard and Albert Ayler. This constant quest for new materials is a defining feature of jazz, and jazz musicians have been particularly open to incorporating the myriad styles and techniques found around the world in various cultures and eras. Many famous artists, including John Coltrane, Charles Mingus, Henry Threadgill, Bill Evans, Peter Erskine, and Anthony Braxton, have adopted (and adapted) the serial techniques of Arnold Schoenberg and the Second Viennese School in their compositions, and indeed, some classical composers (like Milton Babbitt and his All Set from the famous 1957 Brandeis concert featured alongside pieces from Charles Mingus, George Russell, and third stream composer Gunther Schuller) have been inspired to write for jazz ensemble using serial techniques. Given its significant pedagogical potential and its intriguing stylistic cross-pollination, the interest in this technique continues to the present day.
Networking the Jazz Arts Community
Ellenberger, Kurt and Lill, Kaja, "52nd Street and the 2nd Viennese" (2013). Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants. 1211.