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Yehudi Wyner

Publisher: G. Schirmer

Passage (1983)
Associated Music Publishers Inc
Large Ensemble (7 or more players)
Year Composed
9 Minutes
Programme Note
Yehudi Wyner Passage (1983)
Composer note

Passage, Part I, was composed in 1983 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Boston-based ensemble COLLAGE. The first performance, conducted by Gunther Schuller, took place in Boston in April, a few days after the score was completed.

Passage I deals with vernacular elements, with utterly familiar musical material. A small collection of ordinary harmonies is set in motion in a manner reminiscent of American popular music of years ago. The harmonic web is surmounted and penetrated by strands and patches of melodic stuff, none of it really self-sufficient or substantial, but all of it conventional. It might not be misleading to compare Passage with an ostensibly bland street scene by Edward Hopper or an "American Flag" by Jasper Johns.

Passage I was conceived as the opening movement in a series of movements. As it stands, Passage I runs just under 10 minutes.

—Yehudi Wyner

Yehudi Wyner’s “Passage I,” written for Collage in 1983, made a welcome contrast. It is a kind of urbanely winking chamber music affectionately woven from the muted harmonies of older American pop traditions but not without a few slyly anachronistic classical touches, as if to pose a playfully Wyner-esque rhetorical question: Why couldn’t Schubert have dreamed of a big band?
Jeremy Eichler, Boston Globe,4/22/2013
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