Calefax Reed Quintet & the Tony Overwater Trio, the Netherlands, 2008

Tour Dates: 28 Oct - 19 Nov, 2008

Calefax Reed Quintet & the Tony Overwater Trio

Calefax – a classical reed quintet – and the Tony Overwater Trio – a jazz ensemble – have joined forces to perform several suites that were written by Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn for the Duke Ellington orchestra, in new arrangements for six reed players (oboe, clarinets, saxophones, bassoon), double bass and drums. Following the huge successes of concerts in the Netherlands (both on classical music stages and in jazz venues such as the Bimhuis and North Sea Jazz) and the internationally acclaimed cd, they are planning a concert series in 2008/2009 through the Near, Middle and Far East. These were the countries that Ellington toured with his orchestra in 1963, and that inspired him to write his famous Far East Suite: from Cyprus and Greece, through Lebanon and Iraq, to India and Japan.

By collaborating closely with musicians in these countries, the two ensembles will enter into a dialogue with other cultures and, most importantly, demonstrate how music can rise above cultural and social differences. Both groups will play ‘ individually’, inviting local musicians to join in; together, Calefax and the Tony Overwater Trio will not only perform the Far East Suite, but also play new music by Dutch composers – written especially for this occasion – as well as new work by composers from the visited countries, in a “jukebox composition” masterminded by saxofonist/composer Maarten Ornstein.

Calefax Reed Quintet

Calefax can be described as a ‘classical ensemble with a pop mentality’. The reed quintet performs standing up, often from memory, and always introduces the programme to their audience. Moreover, the five musicians arrange, recompose and interpret music from six centuries to suit their unique line-up. Renaissance, baroque, impressionism, jazz or world premières: in the hands of Calefax it all sounds fresh and new.

The internationally recognized quality of the arrangements and their ensemble playing have brought Calefax everywhere in Europe, both to stages for new music and to renowned early music festivals. With its striking and natural performance, the ensemble is a popular and respected guest at festivals in Europe and the United States. With the receipt of the Philip Morris Art Prize (1997), the Kersjes van de Groenekan Prize (2001) and the VSCD Classical Music Award (2005), the quintet has been awarded with three of the highest Dutch music prizes.

Tony Overwater Trio

The Tony Overwater Trio consists of three top jazz musicians from The Netherlands, whose main goal it is to enjoy playing music, to perform without any assumptions and to make ‘free’ music in the true sense of the word. They met at the Royal Conservatory in the Hague during their studies and performed together in various settings ever since. And as outstanding as a trio, just as impressive are the individual careers of these gifted artists.
Tony Overwater, a virtuoso bassist - who received the VPRO/Boy Edgar Prize (thé Dutch jazz award) in 2003 and was nominated for the Bird Award the same year, is also a highly acclaimed composer, whose musical interests range from jazz to improvised and world music. Reed player and composer Maarten Ornstein masters both (bass)clarinet and tenor saxophone and is famous for his special sound and his contributions to modern jazz and improvised music. Wim Kegel is considered one of Holland’s most remarkable drummers, developing a unique style combining jazz tradition with a personal and progressive approach.
The group performed with many international artists like Pat Metheny, Ilse de Lange, Ack van Rooyen, Calefax, and David Murray.