Kristal Klaar XXL Big Band

The first concert in the series of the 9th edition of “Kristal Klaar” is dedicated to the Big Band. The main program, conducted by John Ruocco, will honour the repertoire of one of the most emblematic arrangers and bandleaders of the last century, the American musician and composer Thad Jones (1923-1986).

Opening acts

This special and highly diverse XXL edition of Kristal Klaar will start in style with work from Thad Jones, performed by a 10-piece ensemble of students of Kunsthumaniora Brussel, conducted by Dieter Limbourg. Line-up: Laura Lattuca (vocals), Beau Kempeneer (bass), Siebert De Ruyver (drums), Maurice De Clercq (tenor saxophone), Lorenzo Kobina & Antony Weng (piano), Kenza De Nolf (saxophone), Arto Van Roey, Elias Durnez (guitar) & Nick Caers (drums).

Followed by a rising star at the jazz firmament, the band ' 2 Times Nothing ', performing own work related to power jazz, with electronica, hip-hop and funk influences. Line-up: Arto van Roey & Jorick Hens (guitar), Maurice de Clerck (saxophone), Jacob Hus (bass) & Jef Cruyssaert (drums)

Thad Jones in the spotlight

Under artistic leadership of John Ruocco.
The American saxophone player John Ruocco (°1952, New Haven Conn.) has been living & working in Belgium and The Netherlands for a very long time now. He shared the stage with artists such as Dizzy Gillespie, Art Farmer, Slide Hampton, Ed Soph, Beaver Harris, Teddy Edwards, Toots Thielemans, Philip Catherine, Joe Lovano, Billy Hart, Kenny Werner, Charles Loos, Bert Joris, Peter Hertmans, Richard Rousselet, Michel Herr and has performed at many internationals festivals. He also recorded a large number of albums with a.o. Peter Herbolzheimer, ACT Bigband, Felix Simtaine, Charles Loos, Richard Rousselet, Christine Schaller, Hein van de Geyn, Philippe Aerts, Peter Hertmans and Frank Vaganee and was part of several radio and tv orchestras in Belgium, Germany and France.

Together with young talents from Kunsthumaniora Brussel and Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel, John Ruocco will pay tribute to the man who wrote an important chapter of the history of the Big Band: Thad Jones.

Jones left the Count Basie Orchestra in 1963 to become a freelance arranger and musician in New York City. In 1965 he and drummer Mel Lewis formed the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra. The group started with informal late-night jam sessions among New York's top studio musicians. They began performing at the Village Vanguard in February 1966, to wide acclaim, and continued with Jones in the lead for twelve years and recorded no less than 20 albums, ‘Live in Munich’ and ‘Monday Night Live at the Village Vanguard’ being rewarded with a Grammy Award. This orchestra was probably the most influential big band since the swing era. It was also a highly unusual ensemble that created new styles, remained integrated in a period full of racial tension and it was successful in an era when big bands were out of favour. Jones' powerful, fast, intellectual but also delightful arrangements are still today the inspiration for modern composers like Maria Schneider, Bob Brookmeyer, Jim McNeely, Bill Kirchner, Richard DeRosa, Bob Mintzer, Jerry Dodgionn, … as they will inspire John Ruocco and our young talents.
Jones wrote numerous highly original and swinging compositions and arrangements, like "A child is born" and "Fingers". Styles, from swing to avant-garde, were merged into his music. His big-band arranging style was unique, especially from the standpoint of featuring dissonant voicings in a tonal context. This required the members of his big band to play correctly in tune, otherwise the dense chords he wrote would not sound correct. Minor 2nds and major 7ths are often featured in his voicings, especially when the entire band plays a long, powerful chord that some would describe as having "bite". Quite a challenge for these young musicians. But under the direction of John Ruocco, we are sure to assist at an exceptional and spectacular concert. And it will certainly cover the name “Kristal Klaar XXL”!

Line-up: Seppe De Bleser & Ambroos De Schepper (alto), Abel Jednak & Creo Cristoria (tenor), Hélène Duret (bariton), Pierre Antoine Savoyat, Thomas Mayade & Raoul Carrera (trumpet), Anthony Bonniere, Karolina Ponomarenkaite & Arturo Gázquez Masedo (trombone), Jesús Moreno Miras (bass trombone), Francois Ducene (piano), Gabriel Chamorro (drums), Victor Defoort (bass) & Elias Durnez (guitar).


• DATE: Thursday November 24, 2016 at 20:00
• LOCATION: La Tentation - 28 rue de Laeken 1000 Brussels
• TICKETS: 14.00 € / +65 & -26: 10,00 € / Students Kunsthumaniora Brussel and Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel: 7.00 €
• INFO AND RESERVATION: Brosella: 02 474 06 41 (info) (reservation)

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