Free evening of big band and jazz music

The Stowe Big Band
The Stowe Big Band

Head to Buckingham’s Radcliffe Centre on Sunday, February 9, for a free concert of big band and jazz music, courtesy of the University of Buckingham and Stowe School.

Free wine and nibbles are also on offer to tempt you out for the evening, which starts at 7pm and is part of the university concerts and lecture series.

Stowe Big Band will be Putting On The Ritz to recreate the big band era and celebrate 90 years of music.

The concert is the first collaboration involving a big group of musicians between the University of Buckingham and Stowe School.

Celebrating Stowe School’s 90th birthday in 2013, it will see performances of classics such as Hello Dolly and Ain’t Misbehavin’, with hits from the 1920s and onwards played by the acclaimed Stowe Big Band and the Jazz Quintet.

Formed 20 years ago, the Stowe Big Band is a group of about 20 musicians playing keyboards, saxophone, trumpets, trombones and drums.

They have featured at a number of prestigious events at locations including Althorp House in Northamptonshire, where Princess Diana was laid to rest.

The Jazz Quintet, which was created five years ago, regularly plays to audiences at dinner and jazz events.

Both acts are made up of students aged between 13 and 18 from the Stowe music department, which has been in existence since the school opened 90 years ago.

Entry to the event, at 7pm at the Radcliffe Centre, is free but donations will be collected to be split equally between Children In Crisis and the University of Buckingham Supporting Overseas Schooling charities.

OnWednesday, February 5, the Radcliffe Centre is also the venue for a concert by two internationally acclaimed musicians – viola player Ziyu Shen and pianist Anthony Hewitt.

Tickets for the 7pm concert, which is the first in a series organised by Seven Star Concerts,are £10 in advance (£5 concessions) from the University of Buckingham’s Yeomanry House reception.

Tickets on the door cost £12 (£6 concessions).

They will play music by Brahms, Prokofiev, Ravel, Guan and Bloch.

Award-winning Ziyu Shen, from China, aged just 16, is in the UK for only two weeks and is also performing at the Wigmore Hall and the Southbank Centre in London.

Anthony Hewitt is founder of the Cumbria-based Ulverston International Music Festival, now in its 11th year.

He is acclaimed as a recitalist, concerto soloist and chamber musician worldwide.

Included in the programme will be a poem by the University of Buckingham’s artist in residence, Graham Roos, to mark the 10th annniversary of the Chinese cocklepickers disaster in February 2004, which has resonance for both Chinese-born Ziyu and Cumbrian Hewitt, whose home town, Ulverston overlooks the fated Morecambe Bay.