A rare performance of Joe Zawinul’s grand orchestral vision of one of the world’s great rivers, conducted by his friend Kristjan Järvi.
In Stories of the Danube the rich textures of the orchestral palette meet the fire and momentum of contemporary Jazz, as the music follows the course of the river through continental Europe and into the Black Sea. Järvi was a close collaborator with Zawinul in the years before his untimely passing – months before he was due to play here for the 2007 Festival – and tonight pays tribute to this seminal figure in Jazz as composer, keyboard virtuoso and co-founder of Weather Report.
Alongside the symphony the trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard and his Quintet will join the BBC CO in the UK premiere of a new extended piece, Herbie Hancock: By Himself, which was inspired by Hancock’s impressionistic piano solos. Complemented with music drawn from the composer’s score for the recent Robert de Niro film The Comedians, it’s a piece which harks back to that classic Blue Note sound of the 1960s and is a perfect accompaniment to the sweeping evocation of the Danube.