Maria Schneider Orchestra
Arguably the most prominent woman bandleader in the jazz field today, Maria Schneider’s music blurs the lines between genres and she finds the word “jazz” limiting, which is why she calls her ensemble the Maria Schneider Orchestra.
As she told an interviewer for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, “I always think of big-band music as theme and variations. My music’s much more through-composed, like classical music. And on my last two records, I don’t even use the word ‘jazz’ anymore.”
During the Orchestra’s performance at the Center, audiences will have the opportunity to experience the range of expression possible with contemporary big band, as will UMD School of Music students who will work with members of the Orchestra in a day-long residency.
Review by DC Metro Theater Arts
Though she did not play, Schneider seemed to enjoy every moment whether she was leading the band or stepping aside to hear another improvisation. Her heart was certainly in her music and on her sleeve that night.
– LISA DRISCOLL, DC Metro Theater Arts, Monday, September 23, 2013
Profile by The New York Times
“My pieces…are through-composed like classical music,” she said. “They go through different sections, so the soloist has to bring the piece from here to there. It’s not ‘This is my solo, I’m going to show you everything I know about the instrument,’ which most big-band music is: kind of an ego show for each soloist. In mine they have to carry the piece and tell the story.”
– ZACHARY WOOLFE, The New York Times, Friday, April 12, 2013