December 4, 2011
Real Art Ways
One of the many things that I admire about Joe Morris is his teaching. Not just the fact that he does it but, rather, how deeply (and, as with his music, innovatively) he enters the pedagogy and how giving he is to his students. For some time now, Joe has been talking about a remarkable young violinist, Yasmine Azaiez. Yasmine studies with Joe at the New England Conservatory of Music.
He invited Yasmine to join us last month. I immediately thought of tubaist Ben Stapp as a match. We divided the evening into solos, duets and a quartet. Yasmine played a composition she wrote, really a plan for improvisation, structured yet loose at the same time. I had a ball in duet with Ben. While I have often done this with bass, this was the first time for me with tuba. Could be habit forming. For me, the peak of the evening was the quartet. Wonderful listening, instantaneous empathy and, best of all, plenty of surprises.
Image of Stephen Haynes by Byron Dean
Images of full group by Rob Miller