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Jazz Assembly

Take your place on centre stage


Thursday 30 May, 6:00pm

Calling all big jazz voices, bathroom crooners, karaoke masters and road-trip belters – it's your time to shine. 

Join the Jazz Assembly in the world premiere of a brand new piece of music commissioned specially for this chorus of voices that everyone can be a part of. Whether you're a seasoned pro or you've never sung a note – we want you. Lend us your voice as vocalist Gian Slater leads the masses in raising the roof at the Atrium at Federation Square. 

Want to get involved? Register here

Please note: the performance will begin promptly at 6pm on Thursday 30 May. We ask that all participants arrive early for a spot rehearsal at 5pm. 

Here's a note from Jazz Assembly leader Gian Slater. 


TAH –By Gian Slater

Teeth and Tongue; Air to Lung; Hum Drum Hum


TAH is a work devised for Jazz Assembly to open the 2019 Melbourne International Jazz Festival.  The work openly invites participants to join in this experience of exploring vocal improvisation en masse.

It will feature some short composed loops that can be learnt prior to the event or can just be picked up within the performance on the day. These composed loops are provided here for those of you who wish to learn them ahead of time but please keep in mind that they will feature throughout at different tempos and in different keys.

It would be wonderful if some participants are familiar with the loops but it is not essential – being open and willing to follow on the day is the key to this experience. Don’t bring the notated music with you for the performance – trust your ears and voices!

Download sheet music here:

Teeth and Tongue
Air to Lung

There will be 4 singers on stage from my vocal ensemble, Invenio Singers representing each vocal part – you will be assigned a part on the day depending on whether you sing low or high.  Your leader will direct you by using their hands and voices to indicate the parts, entries, exits and dynamics.  There may be a few moments where they depart from what you are doing but they will cue that too. We will run through the cues shortly before the performance.


Here is little explanation of some of the improvisatory events that will happen during this work so you will know some things to expect as well as how to listen and watch out for particular cues.  The work is divided into three movements.


Teeth and Tongue is an exploration of sounds we make with our voices and mouths outside of a more traditional mode of singing. In preparation for this experience, try making sounds that play with your tongue and teeth. Perhaps try making an insect sound, either one that you can emulate or a sound you can only imagine ie. The sound of an ant walking.


Air to Lung is an exploration of breathing sounds.  Think about a range of short, long, quiet, loud breathing sounds. You can also push the breath through a syllable ie. Shhhh, ffffff, kkkkkk.  It might also help to think of themes like water, fire crackle or static to animate the sound.


Hum-Drum- Hum is an exploration of long notes improvised together into a rhythmic section.  This piece will begin with humming long notes together – otherwise known as a soundbath. Any note is a good note. You will not be trying to match the same note as your leading Invenio singer but rather choose your own pitch and duration of the note. This will then work into the Rhythmic loop  - It will be important at this point to really follow your leading Invenio singer for the timing. 


**General Tips- Participants will not know the detailed plan for this work until we are performing it and so it is really important that you surrender to the experience and enjoy the sounds around you without worrying about what might be coming next. While at times it is encouraged that you jump in and make as much sound as you like, it is also recommended that you leave some space to just listen and enjoy the sounds around you.  

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