Monday, August 15, 2011
US jazz legends come together for NZ gigs
Three international jazz stars, who have backed the likes of Eric Clapton, Elvis Costello, Steely Dan, Boz Scaggs, James
Taylor, Natalie Cole, Rod Stewart, Stevie Wonder, Gary Burton and Toots Thielemans between them, will star in the Massey
University Albany campus’ Jazz Concert of the Year this Sunday.
In the second of their two New Zealand concerts, visiting United States musicians Alex Sipiagin (trumpet), Bob Sheppard
(saxophone) and Steve Houghton (drums) will join the legendary New Zealand trombonist Rodger Fox for an extraordinary
performance with Auckland-based jazz pianist Phil Broadhurst, bassist Thomas Boting and special guests the Alan Brown
In the capital they will be backed by the award-winning New Zealand School of Music Big Band and Wellington Jazz
Orchestra in a Gala Jazz Concert, on Friday, 19 August, at the Wellington Town Hall. They will run workshops for jazz
students in Wellington on Thursday.
“All three guest artists are vastly experienced musicians with an extensive performance and recording pedigree,” says
the School’s events coordinator Stephen Gibbs.
Alex Sipiagin began learning trumpet in Russia and at 16 entered the Moscow Music Institute combining his classical
studies with explorations into jazz. Following a 1990 visit to the United States performing with a Russian student jazz
band, Mr Sipiagin decided to take his jazz studies to the next level and moved to New York City. He became a member of
the Mingus Big Band in 1995 and in 2003 he recorded with Michael Brecker’s Quindectet. With more than 11 recordings to
his credit, he tours extensively throughout Europe, Japan and Russia.
Both Steve Houghton and Bob Sheppard have been to New Zealand before and impressed audiences with their virtuosity,
technical fluency and outstanding musicianship. “They are also excellent communicators and teachers,” Mr Gibbs says.
Mr Sheppard has been a studio musician on a wide range of studio, film and television projects, and has also recorded
his own albums. Among the many artists he has collaborated with are Steely Dan
, Rickie Lee Jones
, Burt Bacharach
, Elvis Costello
, Randy Newman
, Chick Corea
and Michael Franks
The concerts are organised by the New Zealand School of Music (NZSM) – a joint venture between Massey and Victoria
Universities, based in Wellington and Auckland.
Jazz Concert of the Year: 8pm, Sunday 21 August, The Round Room, Atrium Building, Massey University Albany. Bookings: www.eventfinder.co.nz
Adults $35, concessions $15 or table for six - $180.