Oliver - Tams Witmark

Discussion in 'Pit Orchestra Stories' started by akinsgre, Nov 22, 2013.

  1. akinsgre

    akinsgre

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    Does anyone have experiece with the show? Looking specifically for difficultly levels on the string parts.

    Any other general thoughts would be welcome as well.
     
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  2. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    Suzy and I are going to the show next month. We have friends in the pit. I do know that there is a bass sax part in there that I am keen to hear. So I look forward to what info other's like Merlin can provide.
     
  3. SOTSDO

    SOTSDO Old King Log Staff Member CE/Moderator

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    Ah, the gratuitous bass saxophone part - the bane of early modern period musicals. It's a neat musical tone color, but seldom worth all of the extra effort needed to bring one to the gig.

    I wouldn't have minded had there been secured storage at the theaters that I played at, but none of them in Saint Louis had such provisions. Getting a bass sax to the jobs that I did back in the day (Funny Girl, West Side Story, Wonderful Town; one wonders why Lennie omitted it from Candide) was an ordeal and a half. In order to fit all of the horns needed into the car I had at the time (a Ford Maverick) I had to take off the seat headrest and place the bass sax on the right side above the seats, blocking most of the view to that side. And, since everything else took up the trunk and rear seat space, there was no room for a handcart (which, back then, meant a standard two wheel tilt cart).

    Then, once it all arrived at the theater, it had to be hauled into the theater. One of them had a tight spiral staircase down to the pit - almost impossible with a baritone, and a non-starter with the bass. We ended up entering through the house, climbing up to the stage, and lowering it down with a fabric sling that my father used to load concrete block pallets onto one of our trucks.

    I decided not to keep the bass sax (rented on a rent to own plan from dear departed St. Ann School Music Service), based upon my experiences with the thing. Had I kept it, it would have cost me all of $600.00 to own. Nevertheless, I think I made the right decision.

    I always wonder how often the bass sax gets omitted from pit orchestras.
     
  4. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    We could ask Merlin how often he uses his bass sax in the pit. Jay Easton does it a lot more than I would expect. But none of this answers the original question.
     
  5. akinsgre

    akinsgre

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    Keep me in mind when you perform. I'll be curious to hear about specific parts and any challenges.
     

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