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In C
 

Sensorium Saxophone Orchestra

The Sensorium Saxophone Orchestra formed in 2008 as NYC's first full-on Saxophone Orchestra with live performances commencing the following year. They have thus far enchanted NYC audiences at Douglas Street Music Collective, Goodbye Blue Monday, Issue Project Room, Brooklyn Lyceum, Gershin Hotel, Shea Stadium, House of Elders, White Box Gallery, 17 Frost Gallery, Midtown Manhattan Library, and Spectrum.

The majority of Miller's SYMPHONY OF SUSPICIOUS ACIVITY was written in 2008 while honing his wholly unique method of composition incorporating all essential Intervals within an Octave. Inspired by the 12-tone method, the results from Miller's method presents a peculiar blend of what he refers to as Radical Pantonality.

Their unique single-timbre take on Terry Riley's minimalist classic "In C" is available on Living Records, Wayside Music (Cuneiform Records), and Downtown Music Gallery. Instead of a Piano Pulse as traditionally used for this composition, a Snare Drum took its place - suggested by brother Roger Miller.


"In C" [Living Records]
The orchestra performed In C numerous times including the use of No Pulse at the Midtown Manhattan Library. "I'm sure this will be a first for saxophone orchestra."
_ Ann Riley, email 2009

PURCHASE "In C" here;

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"CLOUD ELEVEN" [Living Records] is a definitive collection of multitrack recordings
and concerts in NYC 2009-2011 featuring Miller's compositions.
"Wonderful Sax Orchestra." _ Terry Riley, email 2014

PURCHASE "CLOUD ELEVEN" here;

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Overseas S & H = $10

This year SENSORIUM is recording The Beatle's "Strawberry Fields" and "Tomorrow Never Knows" with lead vocal supplied by Marianne Nowotnny. This will be released as a 45 rpm vinyl on Abaton Book Company.

Abaton Book Company released Miller's "Every Room" in 2007 as a 45 rpm lathe-cut (OOP). This 12-tone composition was recorded soley by Miller overdubbing 16 saxophones before forming The Sensorium Saxophone Orchestra.

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Miller's SYMPHONY OF SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY was recorded in 2013 at Brooklyn's Kennel Studios; a 45 minute composition for 11 saxophones and 2 drum kits.
First premiered at Brooklyn Lyceum in 2009, it has since evolved as a mix of neo-classical, maximalism, and head-rocking dissonance. A 2015 vinyl release is anticipated.

Miller's musical influences are as diverse as Syd Barrett's Pink Floyd, MC5, Cage, Stockausen, Sun Ra, Ornette, Varese, Messiaen, Shoenberg, The Damned, Art Bears, and Glenn Branca to name a few. His initial attraction to Music Theory at Boston Contemporary School of Music ('73) was the relationships of intervals within chord structures. Not how they played out in Jazz or Classical, or even 20th Century, but simply the curiousity of which they evoked. While finishing his degree at Columbia College Chicago 20 years later, Miller devoted much of his time to fully notated composition reviving his interest in intervallic relationships. There he developed a method of composition working with all 11 intervals within a single octave. This unique method finally came to fruition in 2007 and is now the primary technique used in his work. A book explaining this entire approach to melodic and harmonic form will be published in 2015.

Roster of NYC orchestra members
Benjamin Miller; composer, conductor, alto, c-tenor -- Gerald Thomas; soprano, alto, tenor, c-tenor -- Kevin Gosa; soprano, alto -- David Schnug; alto, tenor -- Justin Wood; alto, tenor -- James Elmore III; alto, tenor -- Daniel Dorrance; alto, soprano -- Briggan Kraus; alto -- Chris Diasparra; tenor, baritone -- Chris Bacas; tenor, soprano -- Josh Sinton; baritone -- Kristin Olson; baritone -- Kyle Saulnier; baritone, soprano -- Stephan Zeniuk; baritone, bass -- Brian Landrus; bass, baritone, tenor, soprano -- Drums: Hiroyuki Matsuura, Jarrod Ruby, John O'Brien.

Roster of MI orchestra members (in construction)

As a preteen, Miller learned the alto saxophone and guitar. At 14, he formed his first albeit short-lived group of 7 electric guitarists. By 9th grade he was exploring Spontaneous Improvisation and Pyschedelic Songwriting with brothers Laurence and Roger in Sproton Layer. This was prior to any contact with Free Jazz as it was considered at that time. In college, Miller composed pantonal music for small ensembles including graphic scores designed to motivate spontaneous improvisation. He continues to use scores written at that time. During the mid-70's, Miller ran his horn through several FX pedals in twin brother Laurence's art-damaged EMPOOL. EMPOOL eventually morphed with Destroy All Monsters releasing two 45rpms sounding nothing like the former.

 

Contact Ben Miller at info@benmiller.info

 

© 2011 Ben Miller

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