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Form: Jared Miller Buzzer Beater

Jared Miller’s Buzzer Beater is a musical tribute to basketball, a sport invented by a Canadian! It uses instruments and objects with specific timbres or qualities of sound to create sound effects which paint an auditory picture and transport us courtside.

When I was asked to write this piece to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, it was specified that the piece be inspired by some aspect of Canada. So, I took a walk in the park near my apartment to brainstorm ideas. While I walked I listed everything I could think of that makes Canada great. I kept getting distracted by the sounds of kids nearly playing basketball. Then, a flashback from fourth grade gym class … basketball was invented by Canadian physician, James Naismith! The resulting piece, Buzzer Beater fuses a variety of music and real basketball sounds to depict the excitement of a game in its final two minutes, as one team tries to score the winning basket. Will they succeed though? And before the clock runs out?

– Jared Miller, Program Notes for Buzzer Beater

Use the Melody Tracker below to see the sound effects being performed and to follow the principal line around the orchestra, observing how the other instruments create the sounds of a basketball game.

Recorded live at Roy Thomson Hall on Sept. 28, 2017, by conductor Peter Oundjian and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Watch the performance on YouTube.

performance of Inuit Games at Roy Thomson Hall
Teachers: Download supplemental resources and lesson plans.
Grades 4-6
Grades 7-8