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Concerto for Cell Phone (2006)
Written for and premiered by Michael Krajewski in 2006
The Concerto for Cell-Phone is what it is! It is simply a light-hearted commentary on the ever-present, yet sometimes unfortunate interruptions that take place in the concert hall as a result of the technological advances of the 20th and 21st centuries.
As conductor Michael Krajewski (for whom the orchestral version was initially conceived) so eloquently stated: “It is the merging of art and technology in a very unique and meaningless way.”
Each performer may choose to add their own spin on the performance of this piece, so as to create humor as they see fit! The gist of the cell phone solo part is to have at least 6 cell phones on hand to act as “instruments”. At the approach of each solo (there are 6), the “cell-phonist” should use one phone to dial another, thereby causing it to ostensibly ring at the prescribed moment in the score. A microphone should be used; however, the ring-tones are all handled by a sound-engineer cuing up the sound-files (supplied as mp3s from Stephenson Music) and playing them on a CD player, or other device, at the correct moments. Rehearsals are needed, of course, but it’s all not as difficult as it may seem.
A video of the orchestral performance may be seen at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aN0c8X80mfA
or by simply doing a YouTube search for: Concerto for Cell Phone Stephenson This may be very helpful in seeing how the piece has been done in the past.
The orchestral version was commissioned by Michael Krajewski and premiered in 2006, and the concert band version was commissioned by Captain David A Alpar and the USAF Band of Liberty in 2009, and was premiered in December of that year.