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29 Oct

Dublin City Jazz Orchestra play 9 new compositions

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World Premiere of the Music of Nine Irish Jazz Composers written for the Dublin City Jazz Orchestra.

On Monday 1 November 2011 at 9pm in The Button Factory, Curved Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2 in what was one of the jazz highlights of the year, the Dublin City Jazz Orchestra presented the world premiere of the music of nine Irish jazz composers.

The nine composers were Brian Byrne, Alex Mathias, John Moriarty, Fintan O’Neill, David O’Rourke, Karl Ronan and Ronan Dooney with Pamela Keeley, Nick Roth, Abigail Smith and Brian Wynne.

Three of the composers are based in America, Brian Byrne, Fintan O’Neill and Dave O’Rourke. Three of the composers are regular members of the orchestra, Alex Mathias, Karl Ronan and Nick Roth. John Moriarty and Brian Wynne have occasionally performed with the orchestra. Pamela Keeley, the lyricist for Karl Ronan and Abigail Smith have not written for a jazz orchestra before.

Allen Smith and Ciaran Wilde, the co-founder with Ray Martin and the leader of the Dublin City Jazz Orchestra discussed the possibility of Jazz on the Terrace commissioning Irish jazz composers to write original compositions for the Orchestra to add to its repertoire for its current series of concerts. Allen Smith proposed making an application for grant aid under the Arts Council’s Music Commissions Award for a Jazz on the Terrace commission commencing in 2010. This was successfully done and the music has been included in the Music Network Performance and Touring Award Series of concerts. The world premiere  took place on Monday 1st November in the Button Factory, Curved Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2.


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There were two further performances of these new works on Saturday 6th November 2010 in the Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray as part of the Improvised Music Regional Touring Scheme and on Wednesday 15th November 2011 for the Limerick Jazz Society in Dolans Warehouse, another concert in the Music Network series.

One of the aims of Jazz on the Terrace since its inception has been to expose Irish musicians to new ventures in jazz music and this project afforded an exceptional opportunity for Irish composers to create music for an Irish jazz orchestra.

The desire and the enthusiasm of Ciaran Wilde and Ray Martin in working so hard to bring this jazz orchestra together, to seek out arrangements of the classic jazz big band repertoire and then to ask some of the Irish arrangers in America to help them by sending what they could, deserves to have the added dimension of new work performed throughout the country and recorded. Jazz on the Terrace also made a successful application to the Music Network/Arts Council Music Recording Scheme 2010 to make a permanent archive of this music.

In 2010 the Dublin City Jazz Orchestra performed at the dlr Festival of World Cultures, Kilkenny Arts Festival, The TBCT Culture Night and at the Guinness Cork Jazz Festival.

The members of the Dublin City Jazz Orchestra are: Ciaran Wilde, Alex Mathias, Derek O’Connor, Nick Roth, Robert Geraghty – saxophones; Danny Healy, Ray Martin, Mark Adams, Eamon Nolan – trumpets; Jim Clarke, Karl Ronan, Barry McBrien, Paul Frost – trombones; Phil Ware – piano, Hugh Buckley – guitar, Cormac O’Brien – double bass, Shane O’Sullivan – drums.

Supported by The Arts Council.

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