“A space for some of the best musical experiences you’re ever likely to hear.”
Birmingham’s brand new, state-of-the-art Eastside Jazz Club is a major boost to the cultural offer of the city and is of international significance to the wider jazz scene. It opens its doors for the first time on Thursday 5th October to begin hosting jazz in all its forms, from standards to contemporary and solo spots to big band, featuring young talent from the immediate jazz community to world-renowned musicians.
The very first public gig in the new 80-seat space is also the start of an exceptional guest artists series: long-time collaborators and great friends, saxophonist David Liebman and composer/pianist Richie Beirach, both stalwarts and innovators on the New York scene for many years, play on Thursday 5 October.
Jeremy Price, Head of Jazz at Birmingham Conservatoire and Artistic Director of Eastside Jazz Club says, “This is a really significant moment for us as we see all our plans come to fruition. We aim to make this venue central to the burgeoning Birmingham jazz scene and a fixture on the international touring circuit for world-renowned artists. We are all really excited to get off the mark officially with such important luminaries for our music as Dave Liebman and Richie Beirach.
” This venue has so much potential and I’m delighted that our architects and acoustic engineers have responded to our requests in such an imaginative and helpful way. It’s a beautiful space in which to play and listen and is also a great social space for musicians and audiences alike. Jazz music deserves the unique club environment that allows it to thrive and develop and we have it right here.”
Internationally-acclaimed guests are already lined up for the first few months. On 2n d November is a chance to hear the magic partnership of Canadian sisters Christine and Ingrid Jensen (saxes and trumpet respectively) with guitarist Ben Monder, known for their organic composing style and infinite variety. Exciting new guitarist and former winner of the Montreux jazz guitar competition, Gilad Hekselman is joined by the stunning lyrical saxophonist Mark Turner on 16th November.
Trumpeter and Yamaha Artist Rex Richardson joins the Jeremy Price Quartet on 9th November, and one of Britain’s most important jazz musicians and a regular Birmingham visitor, saxophonist Stan Sulzmann plays with the Eastside Jazz Club Trio on 30th November.
Eastside Jazz Club will host events most evenings with days of the week dedicated to different strands of jazz repertoire: Monday is Big Band Night with the Jazz Orchestra and Ellington Orchestra alternating weekly; Tuesday is Jazz Canon night featuring the music of the masters such as Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock and Ornette Coleman.
Wednesdays give the floor to contemporary and original jazz with celebrity guest nights taking a regular Thursday slot. Fridays will see anything from the Afro-Cuban Band to folk, gypsy and swing, kicking off on 13th October with singer-songwriter and keys man Oli Rockberger. Saturdays are given over to the local community and young musicians’ groups.
Eastside Jazz Club is part of Birmingham Conservatoire’s new £57 million building and the first permanent jazz space in any UK conservatoire. Birmingham Conservatoire, which is part of Birmingham City University, launches its inaugural season of concerts on Sunday 11th March 2018 in the brand new concert hall with a Royal Gala concert performed by the Birmingham Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra and conducted by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra’s Music Director, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla.
Eastside Jazz Club opens on Thursday 5th October. For further information and details of how to book, visit www.bcu.ac.uk/concerts