Jazz, Main Stage

“Listen, Let Go, and Have Fun”: An Interview with Violinist Johnny Gandelsman

On Saturday, May 19, Celebrity Series will present the brand new musical collaboration between groundbreaking jazz saxophonist Joshua Redman and genre-defying string quartet Brooklyn Rider that explores new music by composers Patrick Zimmerli, Colin Jacobsen, Guillermo Klein, and an arrangement of “Veda” by Gabriel Kahane just for this group. Celebrity Series audiences will remember Brooklyn Rider from their debut performance on the inaugural year of our contemporary music festival Stave Sessions in 2015, and a return performance in 2016 with singer-songwriter Gabriel Kahane. This performance will mark the Celebrity Series debut for Redman, who WGBH has called “an uncompromising creative spirit,” and who will be joined by all-star collaborators percussionist Satoshi Takeishi and bassist Scott Colley.

Johnny Gandelsman of Brooklyn Rider

Founding member of Brooklyn Rider, violinist Johnny Gandelsman, answered a few questions about this exciting new collaboration with Redman and offered some advice on working with other musicians. Read on to discover how they blended jazz and classical music to create a “new band,” and grab your tickets online here.

Celebrity Series: How did this collaboration with saxophonist Joshua Redman come about?

Johnny Gandelsman: A few years ago Josh came to us with the idea of recording an album of music written by Patrick Zimmerli for Josh, Sato [Takeishi, percussion], Scott [Colley, bass] and a string quartet, to be released on Nonesuch Records. We of course said yes – all 3 of those guys are incredible musicians, and Patrick’s music is beautiful, challenging and ultimately, very satisfying. This weekend’s shows mark the first time we are getting together to perform this material, so it will feel very special.

CS: What is special about Brooklyn Rider’s collaboration with Joshua and his ensemble?

JG: Everything. A few months ago we got together to rehearse for these shows, and after spending three days together, we walked out feeling like a new band was born. The combination of instruments works really well together; Josh, Sato and Scott are amazing musicians, and in addition to Patrick Zimmerli’s work, we are adding originals by Josh and Brooklyn Rider’s own Colin Jacobsen, as well as a new suite written for Josh and Brooklyn Rider by Guillermo Klein, another heavy musician. This show is gonna be super fun, so don’t miss it!

CS: Coming from the classical world, which usually adheres closely to notated music and places a premium on precision, what have you and Brooklyn Rider learned by working with jazz artists and other improvisers?

JG: Listen. Trust your instincts. Let go. Listen. Have fun. Listen.

CS: This will be Brooklyn Rider’s third time performing with the Celebrity Series of Boston (on Stave Sessions, with Gabriel Kahane, and now with Joshua Redman). Do you have any fond memories of those first two concerts?

JG: When we played our show with Gabe, we weren’t sure we were going to make it – it was winter, and there was a giant snowstorm. We drove for many hours, and finally made it. We were grateful to each and every one of the audience members who made it out that night. It’s nice to play a show in May!


Rehearsing with Joshua Redman, Satoshi Takeishi, and Scott Colley

In rehearsal with some great guys – Joshua Redman on tenor sax, Satoshi Takeishi on drums, and Scott Colley on bass. Performing May 18 at Princeton's McCarter Theatre Center and May 19 at The Celebrity Series of Boston – tickets: bit.ly/10FEIMm

Posted by Brooklyn Rider on Thursday, April 26, 2018

Joshua Redman & Brooklyn Rider
Berklee Performance Center
Saturday, May 19, 2018 at 8:00 PM
Tickets:  https://www.celebrityseries.org/productions/joshua-redman-brooklyn-rider/


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