Archive of films Inside Out in the Open / Inside Out in the Open

2001, 60 min

Section: 2003: A Musical Odyssey
Year: 2003

“Ecstasy jazz”, ecstatic jazz: contemporary free jazz and expressive improvisation. Elite, largely Afro-American performers from New York and Chicago play and talk about chaos, order, communication, and the spiritual, creative and civil right to freedom.


“Ecstasy jazz”, ecstatic jazz: the terms used today to describe a scene dominated by improvisers whose expression respects the freedom and order of free jazz. It is to these (chiefly Afro-American) performers that this film debut by former Cleveland post-office clerk Alan Roth is dedicated. The prestigious television series “Ken Burns Jazz” provoked him into filming the “missing chapters” which never found their way into the “official” history of jazz. Roth filmed interviews with eleven top improvisers, complementing them with excerpts from concerts and films featuring the late founders of this brand of aesthetics (John Coltrane, Sun Ra). Music which, in intensity and expression, may seem rather chaotic but is, in reality, all about human and spiritual communication, perhaps the perpetuation of African ritual in the heart of the American big city. The claim to individuality and independence is intrinsic to the artistic and civil nature of man the musician. Saxophonist Archie Shepp: “If you want to go on calling what we do jazz, you may as well keep calling us niggers!”.

About the director

Alan Roth, director, producer and editor of this film, was once employed as a post-office clerk in Cleveland. He was also a civil and cultural activist. He moved to New York in 1995 and began studying film. He now lives in Brooklyn. His second film, in which he takes a look at the black jazz scene and the freedom of improvisation, is a portrait in the making of the ensemble New York Art Quartet, a band which only existed for a year, yet greatly influenced the genre. 


Asymmetric Pictures
, 11220, New York
United States of America
Tel: +1 718 567 8052
E-mail: [email protected]

Third World Newsreel
, 10018, New York
United States of America
Tel: +1 212 947 9277
Fax: +1 212 594 6417
E-mail: [email protected]

About the film

Color, BETA SP

Section: 2003: A Musical Odyssey
Director: Alan Roth
Dir. of Photography: různí kameramani / various camera persons
Editor: Alan Roth
Producer: Alan Roth
Production: Asymmetric Pictures
Cast: Marion Brown, Roswell Rudd, John Tchicai, Alan Silva, Burton Greene, Joseph Jarman, Baikida Caroll, William Parker a další/and others
Contact: Asymmetric Pictures, Third World Newsreel

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