|Difficulty||UK grade 8 (advanced) < 9 (diploma level)|
|Format||Score + Parts|
|Instruments||viola or voice; double bass; alto sax; piano|
This work has an interesting history. In 2002 Kapustin wrote a Suite, op 106, for the unusual but rather lovely combination of viola, alto saxophone, piano and double bass. At the request of his dedicatee, the violist Svetlana Stepchenko, he then composed the Sweet Georgia Brown Variations, op 107, for the same instruments, intended to be an encore piece for the Suite. The Variations, which are directly based on Ben Bernie and Maceo Pinkard's famous jazz standard, were tried out by a number of musicians, but nobody could continue much beyond bar 104 - about two-thirds of the way through. At this point Kapustin instructs the viola player to stop playing and indulge himself or herself - and the audience - in about 30 bars of scat singing. If the violist is male, then the passage has to be sung falsetto. It should be pointed out that Stepchenko, a fine violist who has played in other recordings of Kapustin's string chamber works, also has a lovely singing voice. The problem was that as soon as the viola player began to sing everyone else would collapse into laughter and the performance had to be abandoned. So, in addition to offering this work in printed form, we are also offering a prize of £100 to the first ensemble to upload a complete and uninterrupted recording onto YouTube. Good luck!
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