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REVIEW: Jazz great Courtney Pine impresses at The Apex

By Adrian Curtis

Courtney Pine and Zoe Rahman
Courtney Pine and Zoe Rahman

The fantastic melding of bass clarinet and piano brought some great sounds as jazz maestro Courtney Pine worked his magic alongside superb playing from awards winning jazz pianist Zoe Rahman.

Moving easily between both there was lovely improvisation as Pine tested the boundaries of his instrument often taking it beyond what seemed possible while Rahman played with bravura and mastery often playing to concert pianist standard.

Their version of A Nightingale Sang in Berkley Square saw some lovely lyrical moments with Pine hitting a great top note as the two enjoyed a great jamming session.

Amazing Grace produced some beautiful mellow tones as Pine played in the upper and lower registers – the audience certainly knew it was witnessing some very special music making throughout the evening.

As a finale the two performed a piece dedicated to Festival director Nick Wells and those who keep the festival alive. Everyone enjoyed its humorous little harmonies, Little Brown Jug, Morning Has Broken, Lean on Me and Wouldn’t It Be Lovely from My Fair Lady among others.

What was an experimental project as Pine moved from Sax to the combination of bass clarinet and piano has been a resounding success producing some lovely interplay between the two instruments.


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