Envelop yourself in jazz inspired by the ideas of poet Langston Hughes, presented by pianist and composer Sarah Tandy.
As one of the key figures of the Harlem Renaissance, Langston Hughes was writing at a time when his city was experiencing a pivotal moment in its cultural history. His writing has helped to shape the identity of jazz in the popular consciousness.
For this piece, some of his ideas about music, love and city life are explored within the musical context of the UK scene, where many aspects of that traditional jazz mythology are being creatively re-interpreted, and the pioneering spirit continues to thrive in diverse city environments. Commissioned by J-Night.
About Sarah Tandy
Growing up in West London in a strong musical family, Sarah Tandy learned to play piano at an early age where she was surrounded by classical music. She eventually went on to study classical piano at a conservatoire and was subsequently a finalist in BBC Young Musician of the Year. However, by the time she reached her early twenties, she was finding it increasingly difficult to function in the classical music world, and the language of classical music no longer seemed adequate to express her own experience.
Studying for an English literature degree at Cambridge University, she soon found solace in playing jazz and this period away from London gave her the time and space to work out who she was as a musician. She would spend hours listening to Coltrane, Mccoy Tyner, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Oscar Peterson, Erroll Garner, Robert Glasper, Brad Mehldau and many others, and working out how to play this exciting form of music that had taken a hold of her.