Tag Archives: Imogen Manins


Reason 12



Ausjazz blog has not exhausted the myriad reasons why you should not miss the opportunity to be at all or part of Wangaratta Jazz and Blues Festival this year, but a dozen is clearly not enough, so I’ve grouped a few who absolutely deserve a mention.

Friday, November 2 at 10pm, WPAC Theatre: Paul Grabowsky and Bernie McGann will perform jazz standards and original compositions in a quartet with bassist Jonathan Zwartz and on drums 2011 National Jazz Awards winner Tim Firth.

Friday, November 2 at 9:45pm, WPAC Memorial Hall: Marc Hannaford with his trio with talented young bassist Sam Pankhust and drummer James McLean, as heard on Marc’s CD Sarcophile.

Saturday, November 3 at 4:30pm, WPAC Memorial Hall: Scott Tinkler Quartet with Marc Hannaford (piano), Sam Pankhurst (bass) and Simon Barker (drums)

Saturday. November 3 at 4pm, Holy Trinity Cathedral: Tim Stevens will perform solo on piano.

Saturday, November 3 at noon Holy Trinity Cathedral: Doug De Vries with bassist Frank Di Sario and drummer/percussionist Alastair Kerr will be playing Brazilian music.

Sunday, November 4 at 12:30pm WPAC Memorial Hall: Tim Stevens will also play in his trio with Ben Robertson on bass and Dave Beck on drums.

Saturday, November 3 at 2:30pm WPAC Memorial Hall: Allan Browne will lead his trio with Marc Hannaford and Sam Anning.

Sunday, November 4 at 6pm, St Patrick’s Hall
: Bob Barnard and Warwick Alder on trumpets.

Saturday, November 3 at 8pm, St Patrick’s Hall
: Hobart pianist Tom Vincent playing Wangaratta for the first time, joined by Sam Anning (bass) and Danny Fischer (drums).

Sunday, November 4 at 8pm, St Patrick’s Hall: Eminent pianist Tony Gould will feature in a quartet with Rob Burke on saxophone, Nick Haywood on bass and Tony Floyd on drums, as well as in the trio (Sunday, November 4 at 2pm, Holy Trinity Cathedral) he co-leads with Imogen Manins on cello and Gianni Marinucci on flugelhorn and trumpet.

Saturday, November 3 at 12:30pm, WPAC Memorial Hall: Sydney bassist/composer Hannah James, a graduate from the ANU School of Music in Canberra, will play in a trio with two members of her quintet, Casey Golden on piano and Ed Rodrigues on drums. Phil Slater on trumpet will be a guest soloist.

Monday, November 5, 1pm, WPAC: Youth jazz showcase concert added to the program on Monday afternoon. It’s separately ticketed, but covered by a festival pass. Generations in Jazz Academy Big Band from Mt Gambier directed by Graeme Lyall; the Monash University Big Band directed by Jordan Murray; and the National Youth Jazz Academy band, with young students aged 18 to 19, based in Wangaratta. This includes a trumpet player aged 13 who is precociously talented.

Hope to see some blog readers at Wangaratta.



Sunday, March 20 at 9pm, Bennetts Lane, Melbourne


Marinucci, Gould, Manins

Tony Gould, Imogen Manins and Gianni Marinucci at Stonnington Jazz,

Gianni Marinucci trumpet and flugelhorn, Tony Gould piano and Imogen Manins cello

Sundays used to be days of worship and reverence for many of us, and the chords and melodies of hymns are deeply embedded in our musical memory banks. Many of us have left that music behind in the process of shedding beliefs, but the beauty and mystery and — it often seemed — the rich exultation and sadness have left their mark, even if at times it shows mostly in an imperative to find alternatives that are challenging, dissonant or provocative.

Marinucci, Gould and Manins are not inviting us to worship, but they may well inspire us to reverence with the beauty of their playing and allow us to sink deeply into the luxurious timbres of their instruments.

I don’t know what this trio will be playing, but I don’t expect it to be at all jarring or hard to take. This Sunday could well be a time for quiet reverence. No drums, no bass; just the mingling voices of these three instruments (well, four if you count Gianni’s two horns).

BRUBECK & BRAID (Canada) at Bennetts Lane

GIG: Aug 5, 2010

Brubeck and Braid

Matt Brubeck, cello
David Braid, piano

I had really no idea of what to expect from this duo from Canada, other than that the musicians’ classical backgrounds would be evident and that I would in all likelihood enjoy the graceful depth of a cello. After the gig I found out that Matt Brubeck’s father is pianist Dave Brubeck, which is more a matter of interest than something that necessarily influences the cellist’s playing. He obviously has a career that does not depend on his dad’s pedigree.

Matt Brubeck
Matt Brubeck

David Braid
David Braid

These guys were relaxed and seemed to have lots of fun, despite the relatively small crowd we turned on. I think they warmed to the enthusiastic audience. Humour was often evident — after opening with Sniffin’ Around (Brubeck), which was a “plucky”, fragmentary piece that I did not immediately warm to, they played Braid’s Huevos Verdes Y Jambon (Green Eggs and Ham). This jaunty piece gave us a chance to hear the bowed cello’s full tone in a fairly busy romp with the piano. (I think that Imogen Manins‘ cello, heard occasionally at Bennetts Lane, has a slight edge in richness of tone.)

Matt Brubeck
Matt Brubeck

A slower piece was what I craved, and it was Mnemosyne’s March (Braid), inspired by the Greek goddess of memory. David Braid reminded us that antipodes was a Greek theory that a southern continent existed. The fluidity of his playing and gentle, expressive touch was carrying me away from the cello, but some sweeping excavations into the depths swayed me back to the strings. Yet this was still music with underlying tension underpinning the beauty.

In What Now? (Brubeck) — or is it What Next? — the musicians’ perfect understanding was evident as they played in sync, yet seemingly with the opportunity to surprise each other. Each player seemed at times to be quite independent, even separate. Rhythm was important, but there was fragmentation. And Brubeck played his instrument as would a classical cellist and also as would an acoustic bassist. The duo was tight in an abrupt finish.

David Braid
David Braid

Matt Brubeck
Matt Brubeck

Braid said his slow ballad Wash Away had a connection to Chopin nocturnes and a film about Ray Charles. The piano ushered in a beautiful, flowing bowed passage on cello and I floated off somewhere over the city. This was classical in feel and suited these two instruments so well.

The set closed with Brubeck’s Spirit Dance, inspired by the multicultural neighbourhoods in Toronto and an attempt to take a range of world musical styles and create a cohesive piece. There was active cello, unity in intricacy, and the piano helped build expectations met by sporadic bowing and plucking of strings before Brubeck’s bow echoed Braid’s perky piano. It built to a gentle crescendo.

David Braid
David Braid

Matt Brubeck
Matt Brubeck

The second set opened with the Brad Meldau piece The Falcon Will Fly Again, followed by what was the highlight for me, a traditional folk song picked up by the duo in Guangzhou during a tour of China, when they went for a walk and heard some elderly people singing by a lake. The melody was entitled Chun Jiang Hua Yue Ye (Spring River Flower Moon Night). Brubeck and Braid seemed to capture the local flavour so well, using plucked cello and piano prepared with chopsticks. To end the piece, Braid plucked the chopsticks from the piano one by one, giving the instrument’s strings rein to resonate delicately.

David Braid
David Braid

Splendiferous piano and flowing cello notes followed in the warm Interior Castles (Brubeck), which had a lush, expansive feel. Monk’s In Walked Bud seemed to move from classical (Bach?) to Stephane Grappelli, and then (to quote one of the visitng musicians, “from the ridiculous to the sublime”) we heard the tragic song It’s Not What It Was (Braid), which began with a long, classically influenced piano solo and included slow, bowed cello. It was restful and moving.

The final piece, the Juan Tizol standard Caravan, ended the night with some swing and Brubeck playing “bass” on his cello, with little strums for emphasis.

For David Braid and Matt Brubeck it was on with their Australian tour. For us it was time to vanish into the night, a small group treated to a delightful evening of fun and deeply expressive playing from two talented visitors from Toronto. May they return soon, to greater acclaim and bigger crowds.