The team behind Guildford Jazz are getting ready to hold their first festival this month with a variety of jazz –as well as funk and Latin – on the bill
Guildford Jazz are getting ready to blow their own trumpet as the first Guildford Jazz Fest is set to take place between 20th and 22nd March.
The three-day event at Guildford’s Electric Theatre will feature music from leading UK jazz, Latin and funk artists and begins on 20th by putting some of the best young jazz musicians from across Surrey in the spotlight, from small ensembles to big bands.
Ease yourself into Saturday with a New Orleans jazz brunch with live music from clarinet maestro Duncan Batchelor and his quartet. Follow that with a wide choice of jazz styles including rising star of the British jazz scene Nicolas Meier who is influenced by his love of Middle Eastern and Turkish music; funk and world-music roller coaster from renowned trombonist Dennis Rollins Velocity Trio and Sandy Burnett reliving The Age of Jazz.
Rounding off Saturday, Pete Churchill sings jazz before headliner Iain Ballamy performs 21st Century Pastoral, an arrangement for big band of music by Ballamy spanning his 30-year career.
Sunday brings Alan Barnes and Dave Newton before a Creole jazz lunch spices things up ahead of the afternoon offerings featuring a tribute to the music of Henry Mancini from The Mark Nightingale/Alan Barnes/Steve Waterman Sextet before a showing of classic Buster Keaton film Steamboat Bill, Jr featuring live musical accompaniment by Gareth Williams, one of the country’s leading modern jazz pianists.
Photos from left: Ian Ballamy, event poster, Marianne Windham
The festival finishes with Latin jazz salsa courtesy of Heads South combining Cuban and other Latin rhythms.
Founder of Guildford Jazz which is behind the festival, Marianne Windham is excited about the first for the community-based arts organisation.
She said: “The festival represents a celebration of all that Guildford Jazz is about: bringing the finest UK jazz musicians to Guildford to play a wide spectrum of accessible music in a friendly-club like atmosphere. There is something for everyone in the programme whether you are just looking for great live music or are a committed jazzer.”
Guildford Jazz has been running regular events since 2011, has organised more than 250 gigs, holds two outdoor concerts a year as well as hosting a monthly jam session.
All profits from the festival will go the local charity partner Guildford Philanthropy which helps local people disadvantaged by disability, poor education, mental illness or caring responsibilities.