FOUR PLUS FOUR ON THE FLOOR

Fourth reason

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4. WHEN DO TWO QUARTETS MAKE AN OCTET?

The mystery of whether two quartets on stage together constitute two quartets or an octet will be solved in the two performances which Ausjazz blog has chosen as its fourth highlight of the Wangaratta Jazz and Blues Festival in 2012.

The No tango Quartet from Germany is led by saxophone player Christina Fuchs with Florian Stadler on accordion, Ulla Oster on bass and Christoph Hillmann on drums.

The Andrea Keller Quartet from Australia is led by pianist composer Keller, with Eugene Ball on trumpet, Ian Whitehurst  on tenor sax and Joe Talia on drums and percussion.

Apparently Fuchs is often asked whether the quartet plays tango or jazz. Well, I’m told she replies “not strictly either, and a little bit of both, but more jazz than tango”.

Fuchs has been in touch with Melbourne pianist and composer Andrea Keller and they’ve developed a collaborative association. For two concerts their quartets will be together premiering material Fuchs and Keller have written for double quartet or octet. Perhaps they will explain the difference on stage.

The double quartet liaison has been supported by Artpipes e.V., which is a not-for-profit organisation promoting international cultural exchange and relations through arts projects that foster awareness of intercultural issues, while striving to facilitate global communication through the arts. The Fuchs/Keller collaboration is its first cultural exchange.

Fuchs told Artpipes she was excited at the prospect of finding new friends in a new continent and experiencing Australian people, food, culture and its amazing landscapes.

“The most thrilling for me is the collaboration with the Andrea Keller Quartet. I am very curious to see how the two units will go together and what new ideas will come out of the creative process. Andrea and I will write fresh compositions for the octet and it will be interesting to see how the two writing styles fit together,” Fuchs told Artpipes.

“We will perform as quartets also and so for us it will also be about the pure joy of playing our music on the stage of a great festival!”

The two quartets will play together on Saturday, November 3 at 4pm in St Patrick’s Hall, and on Sunday, November 4 at 11am in the WPAC Theatre.

No Tango Quartet will perform on Saturday, November 3 at 10pm in St Patrick’s Hall

Andrea Keller Quartet will perform on Saturday, November 3 at 10pm in WPAC Memorial Hall and on Sunday, November 4 at 10pm at the same venue.

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