Corey Mwamba Orrery. Commissioned to Celebrate 30th Anniversary of Derby Jazz



Founded in 1982, the not-for-profit promoter Derby Jazz will celebrate its 30 - year anniversary this November, and has commissioned a piece from local Derby - based composer/vibraphonist Corey Mwamba

Orrery is inspired by the Derby-based 18th century artist Joseph Wright. In Wright's picture - which has been on display in Derby Museum and Art Gallery since 1884, and is one of Neil Macgregor's 100 Objects -  a group of people studying a mechanical model of the six planets of the then-known solar system.

To reflect this, Mwamba gives each front-line musician the role of a planet whilst symbolising the sun with the rhythm section. The frontline (which consist of 6 musicians) will move around the “sun” independently, sometimes eclipsing each other, sometimes moving in tandem.

Further lending itself to the idea of the solar system, Mwamba has arranged material written by the musicians themselves (which include influences from science, maths, poetry and mythology) to go into the piece giving the musicians a completely individual presence within the context of an organised whole.

Even the audience will be involved, at least during the first performance; there is no stage. Instead, the group will move around the audience allowing them to become “the cosmic dust in a jazz solar system.” The second performance will be more conventional with a stage and seats

Mwamba and Derby Jazz have had a fairly close working relationship over the years (this is the third piece they have commissioned). The night will also celebrate - and feature - national and international musicians whose careers started in or around Derby.

The 30th will feature:

Corey Mwamba - vibraphone

Alex Suckling - trumpet

Dave Kane - bass

Deborah Jordan - vocals

Graham Clark - violin

Jan Kopinski - saxophones

Joshua Blackmore - drums

Julian Siegel - bass clarinet

Tony Kofi - baritone saxophone

The two performances of the work will take place on Friday, 30th Nov, 8 pm, at:

Darwin Suite
Assembly Rooms
Market Place, Derby
Tel: 01332 255800 or book online. Under-16s go free.

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