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The Ecstatic Double Bass (Lecture-Recital)

Event information

START DATE 17 January 2017
START TIME 07:00pm

Concert Room (2nd Floor), Grove B building, Middlesex University, the Burroughs, London, NW4 4BT

END DATE 17 January 2017
END TIME 09:00pm

A lecture-recital by founder and Artistic Director of the London Jazz Orchestra Barry Guy

This lecture-recital by Barry Guy, one of the world’s leading experts of free jazz and baroque performance, will explore two major works for the double bass.

Xenakis’s Theraps (1975-76), is one of the most complex and virtuosic works for the double bass, and is considered by many unplayable.

Guy discusses his direct collaboration with Xenakis in developing his unique interpretation of the work, as well as a new performance edition of the score.

Guy also discusses and performs his Five Fizzle for Samuel Beckett, a work that stretches the technical, interpretative and improvisational possibilities of the instrument to their limits.


Barry Guy is an innovative bass player and composer whose creative diversity in the fields of jazz improvisation, chamber and orchestral performance and solo recitals is the outcome both of an unusually varied training and a zest for experimentation, underpinned by a dedication to the double bass and the ideal of musical communication.

He is founder and Artistic Director of the London Jazz Composers Orchestra and the BGNO (Barry Guy New Orchestra) for which he has written several extended works. Guy continues to give solo recitals throughout Europe as well as continuing associations with colleagues involved in improvised, baroque and contemporary music.

His current regular ensembles are the Homburger/Guy duo, the Parker/Guy duo, piano trios with Marilyn Crispell and Paul Lytton, Jaques Demierre and Lucas Niggli, and a recently formed trio with Agusti Fernandez and Ramon Lopez. He continues the longstanding trio with Evan Parker and Paul Lytton as well as projects with Mats Gustafsson.

His latest group is the Blue Shroud Band, which was formed with specially chosen musicians from all over Europe to perform his large-scale work combining free-jazz and baroque styles, The Blue Shroud (Intakt Records).

Guy was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Middlesex University in July 2016.

This event is hosted by the Department of Performing Arts, as part of the Music Concerts and Colloquia series.

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