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Musicians Company announce the winners of the 2018 Dankworth and Eddie Harvey Jazz Awards.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

We have received the following press release;


The Musicians’ Company is delighted to announce the winners of the 2018 Dankworth and Eddie Harvey Awards.

The winner of the Dankworth Composition Award for Big Band is BILLY MARROWS for his piece Scenes from the Underground.

The winner of the Dankworth Composition Award for Small Band is LUKE BAINBRIDGE for his piece Crossing Styx.

The winner of the Eddie Harvey Jazz Arranger’s Award is JAMES BRADY for his arrangement for big band of Billy Strayhorn’s Lush Life.

The three winning works will be performed at The Royal Academy of Music on Sunday 25th March at 6.30pm.  The concert, directed by Pete Churchill, will be given by the RAM’s Jazz Composer’s Big Band and also feature the premieres of works written by RAM final-year students.

The awards will be presented by members of the Dankworth and Harvey families and each of the three winners will receive a cheque for £1,000.  The awards are funded by The Musicians’ Company with generous assistance from The Wavendon Foundation.

Billy Marrows is a guitarist and award-winning composer who has recently graduated with a first-class degree in Jazz Guitar Performance from the Royal Academy of Music. Active on the London jazz scene, Billy is a member of ensembles such as Tom Barford’s Asterope and the Matt Sulzmann Quintet and leads his own octet and quartet, performing at venues such as the Vortex, Ronnie Scott’s, the 606 and UK jazz festivals. Billy played guitar on Tom Ridout’s 2017 album ‘No Excuses’ and recently he recorded with Tom Barford’s Asterope for their upcoming album, to be released later in 2018 on Edition Records.  In 2016 Billy won the small ensemble category of the Dankworth Prize for Jazz Composition, his writing being described as ‘fresh and unpredictable’ by Jazzwise Magazine. Also that year, Billy was commissioned by Lancaster Jazz Festival to write a suite for his octet that explored ideas from gamelan. Premiered at their 2016 festival, part of this suite was also broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and Billy was subsequently listed as ‘one to watch in 2017’ by Jazzwise. Lately, Billy has written several big band arrangements for the Seven Steps Big Band.

Luke Bainbridge has recently graduated from the University of Birmingham (UoB) with a First in Music, having also spent a year abroad at the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) in Saskatoon, Canada.  Over the course of his degree, Luke’s two fields of interest have been jazz drumming and contemporary composition. On graduating, he received the ‘Compass Composition Prize in association with Birmingham Contemporary Music Group’, which led to a new commission for the 2018 CrossCurrents festival at UoB.  Luke’s compositions have always been influenced by his study and practice of jazz. The inspirational spark came in his first year, when Lluis Mather introduced the UoB Big Band to the music of Kenny Wheeler, Bob Brookmeyer, Gil Evans and Maria Schneider. Taking inspiration from these composers, Luke was fascinated by how much contemporary classical techniques and jazz theory could offer to each other. Luke has also been heavily involved in jazz performance at UoB and U of S, holding the drum chair for both big bands and becoming a busy temporary member of Saskatoon’s professional jazz scene. In his final year at UoB, Luke was mentored by drummer Jonathan Silk, who workshopped his jazz trio and directed the UoB Big Band. Highlights included gigs featuring Stan Sulzmann and Bobby Shew, and working closely with Jonathan to manage the 2017 UoB Summer Festival Big Band.  Most recently, Luke has taken on freelance work for Faber Music and will be starting a Masters in Jazz Performance in September at the Royal Academy of Music.

James Brady is a composer-performer collecting influences ranging from Ireland to Brazil; he combines these with deep roots in jazz, in search of compelling means of expression. His initial training in classical music underpins a compositional voice which utilises bold melody, intricate counterpoint and finely honed ensemble-writing, coupled with the expressive, spontaneous potential of improvisation and the harmonic richness of jazz to create works which are sonically and emotionally vibrant.  He followed study at the Royal Academy of Music with an undergraduate degree in Music from the University of Cambridge (specialising in composition) and a Masters in Jazz Trumpet from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he wrote regularly for the Guildhall Jazz Band. Now active as a composer, arranger, music educator and multi-instrumentalist, he works across the jazz sector as well as leading groups including with Latin-influenced quintet Vesperados and genre-bending octet Voyagers and most recently his big band, whose 2017 Christmas launch show was described by London Jazz News as “the perfect blend of hip and nostalgia… a Christmassy triumph”. Selected pieces for big band have been published by Kevin Bell Music and have been awarded prizes including runner-up in the 2017 Dankworth Prize in the big band composition category. As well as writing for traditional big bands and small jazz line-ups, he has also written extensively for orchestra and last year arranged 18 pieces by David Bowie for 8-part choir and 4-piece band for shows promoted by the Jazz Café.

Tickets for the concert on 25th March at The Royal Academy of Music are available from the RAM Box Office on or by phone at 020 7873 7300. Tickets cost £10 (concessions £8).

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