Roscoe Mitchell Duet – A Game of Catch

Director: Giuseppe De Vecchi
Genre: Live Show


Roscoe Mitchell is one of the most important composer-jazz improvisers-instrumentalists of our time as well as one of the greatest musical thinkers, educators and conceptualists. A leader in the field of avant-garde jazz and contemporary music, he is well known as a founding member of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) and the founder of one of the most recognized groups in jazz: The Art Ensemble of Chicago. In addition to his mastery of the saxophone, he is an innovator in the use of collage techniques, repetition, silence, noise, and the ACS specialty of “small instruments”: recorder, harmonica, whistle, and a range of small percussion instruments such as gourds and bells. Mitchell, along with his colleagues in the Chicago-based AACM, notably Anthony Braxton and Leo Smith, took the next step in the innovations of the first generation of free jazz (Ornette Coleman, Cecil Taylor and Albert Ayler). Mitchell has recorded over 100 albums and written hundreds of compositions. His compositions range from classical to contemporary, from wild and energetic free jazz to ornate chamber music. When he relies on structural and formal jazz conventions, Mitchell can often come across as stilted and unswinging. On the other hand, his forays into free-form, nontonal improvisation (both structured and unstructured) are as spontaneous and emotionally satisfying as the best jazz. He is both a patient and impulsive improviser, prone to alternating episodes of order and chaos, clarity and complexity. At his most lyrical, Mitchell’s saxophone lines exploit the instrument’s strength as an interval-creating machine. Whether he plays loudly or softly, slowly or quickly, Mitchell is always imbued with passion and intensity.

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