Three brass players enter the stage producing various guttural sounds. From the dressing a cheerful song can be heard. And eventually the rest of the Big Band enters the stage. Percussionist Joey Marijs leads the pack. A spectacular entrance. David introduces his Big Band and 'warns' for a programme with incredible diverse compositions.
The Big Band kicks off with Jan Peter de Graaf's piece 'Verses on subtility', with the composer acting as conductor. Jan Peter wrote the piece in 2013 and David Kweksilbers ensemble premiered the composition on 13 December 2013. Music sounding like an old fashioned record player gradually distorting and returning to more regular sounds. A nice trombone solo encapsulated by the big band as a whole, is followed by a bassoon solo (Alan Wesly). With the xylophone, piano and trumpet shaping the finale of the piece.
Then David annouces the first of eigth premieres. Latvian composer Krists Auznieks 'And the flowers showered' is a tribute to his teachers Peter Adriaansz and Gilius van Bergeijk. For after four years of study at the Royal Conservatoire Krists will say farewell after graduating later this spring. An emotional piece with a more tranquil notion, in line with much of his earlier compositions. Soprano Claron McFadden starred in this piece. A serene start of the composition with long held notes carried by the driving force of the piano. With a more rythmic second part.
Eirik Brandal's piece DPRK (Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea?) streams quietly like a river with deep bass notes, propelled by an electric double bass.
Justina Siksnelyte's piece 'Everyone should dance alone once in a while' is a real big band composition. Energetic and utilizing the full spectrum and brass volume of the big band. Soprano Claron McFadden also featured in this David Kweksilber conducted piece, in which also tap dancer Peter Kuit contributed. All culminating into a terrific finale.
Eugene Kim's composition Sequoia was inspired by his outdoor camping experiences in California. Living beside the giant trees, he understood the sound absorbing effect of the trees bark. A kind of accoustic dampening. Long held, strong notes in the lower register, kicked off by the tuba (Arjan Stroop). Ripping trombones ending with a duet by bass drum and triangle.
After the intermission hoboist Werner Herbers conducts a long forgotten westcoast big band piece. Then back to the premieres again. American Ethan Braun, who grew up in Los Angeles, is a big Stan Kenton fan. He produced a highly atmospheric composition, again conducted by Peter Jan de Graaff. Including a fine sax - and piano solo.
In Yael Levy's composition the big band is strengthened by Claron McFadden and Peter Kuit. A piece with soul influences, with a bassoon - and a clarinet (David Kweksilber) solo. Ending with a duet of soprano and cornet (Felicity Provan).
Next on the programme is Distorted Reflections by Caitlin Alais Callahan. Distorted trombone sounds. The bass clarinet joins in with stilled movements to more or less duel with the trombone. The rest of the wood section and the flute hitch on. And finally the brass joins in. A flugelhorn and bass clarinet duet forms the intermezzo. Through the entire piece trombone player Wolter Wierbos roams the stage musically commenting on the sounds of music produced by his fellow musicians.
David Awotwi's compostion Morse Code David is again conducted by Jan Peter de Graaff. Beside soprano Claron McFadden David Awotwi joins in by slapping his cheecks open mouthed. Staccato music as you can understand by the title.
After the final notes of the piece all composers present themselves on stage. Ringmaster David Kweksilber throws around his comments:"We're so good in contemporary music; no one can count like we do." Followed by an encore with soprano and tap dancer in a David Kweksilber Big Band repertoire piece. David thanks his band, his "slaves": "It is a feast to play with these great musicians. And congratulations to guitar player Wiek Hijmans, who celebrates his birthday today." Finally David thanks the audience and calls:"Come back and listen to live new music. And please do fill in your email adress on the forms in the bar, to get our newsletter."
By the way, David gathered an all star line up for his Big Band featuring amongst others legends like Wolter Wierbos (trombone), Guus Janssen (piano), Toon van Ulsen (trombone), Michiel van Dijk (saxophone), Leo van Oostrom (saxophone), Wiek Hijmans (electric guitar) and percussionists Joey Marijs and Niels Meliefste.