Sonia Jacobsen

headshot 2 Sonia JacobsenSonia Jacobsen
Sonia’s childhood was split between Australia and Denmark. Her music studies took place in France and New York. Sonia strives for a synthesis between the classical and jazz worlds by bridging them with her experience in world music and contemporary rhythms. Sonia has studied musicology and jazz saxophone at Grenoble University, Chambéry Conservatory and The New School University in NY. TEaching posts include The New School Jazz and currently at the School of Music at the University of South Carolina. Sonia’s compositions have received numerous awards and prizes from IAJE (International Association of Jazz Educators), ASCAP, American Music Center, American Composers Forum, American Scandinavian Society, Danish Foreign Ministry/Cultural Affairs, and L’Orchestre National de Jazz, France. Her music has been performed by  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra (Germany), Philharmonia Virtuosi (NY), L’Orchestre National de Jazz (France), New Juilliard Ensemble (NY), and Richmond Concert Jazz Orchestra (LA). She is founder and director of the New York Symphonic Jazz Orchestra, and she was co-founder and co-director of Mosaic Orchestra, which had a biweekly jazz club gig in NY in the late 90’s.

Sonia writes:
I chose to approach Carried By The Winds with classic motivic development techniques so that I wouldn’t ‘only’ play with orchestral sounds (and literally all the bells and whistles imaginable), but so that the piece itself regardless of orchestration would have substance that could work even as a piano transcription. I picked a basic 6-note motif and subjected it to many melodic variations as well as a wide variety of stylistic contexts. Considering that these styles of music that lend elements to this piece are SO varied (ranging from tango, funk, jazz, Venezuelan joropo, Anatolian and Eastern European folklore, in addition to more modern classical textural and spectral coloristic approach) I thought that having the melodic motif in all its variations lending a certain recognition factor to counterbalance the stylistic surprises, and create more coherence. I try to approach this stylistic diversity as a real melting pot of influences and I am very consciously trying to avoid it becoming a mere collage. I borrow particular elements, a rhythm, a scale, an aesthetic, a harmony approach…

listen to Fables Macabres: