Leamington jazz group to collaborate with other musicians for two gigs as part of Commonwealth Games celebration

Interplay are set to play alongside South African and Indian music artists as part of the month-long CultureFest event which runs alongside the games sports being hosted in Leamington and Warwick

A Leamington jazz group will collaborate with other artists to put on two concerts as part of an ongoing event to celebrate the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Interplay is deep-diving into musical traditions from Commonwealth countriesas part of Warwick District Council’s month-long Culturefest event.

The programme, Musical Exchanges, is intended to explore and celebrate the way that Commonwealth musicians have influenced each other.

A poster for the Jazz Meets Dancehall event . Picture submitted.

The first gig, Jazz Meets Dancehall, will take place at the Nelson Club in Warwick on Saturday (August 6) from 7.30pm.

The concert will celebrate Jamaican Ska and Reggae classics alongside South African Township Jazz.

Annie Whitehead (trombone) and South African-born Claude Deppa (trumpet) will join Interplay’s regular line-up of Alan Wakeman (saxes), Neil Hunter (keys) Adrian Litvinoff (basses) and Dave Balen (drums, percussion).

Interplay have said: “Many South African jazz musicians emigrated to Britain in the 1960s and 1970s bringing a vibrant new energy to British jazz.

A poster for the Indian Jazz Fusion concert. Picture submitted.

"Both Claude and Annie have a long association with that musical movement.

"At the same time the Notting Hill Carnival became a focus for Jamaican music in Britain eventually inspiring Ska, Reggae and Two-Tone music in the host community.”

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Indian Jazz Fushion will follow at the Dormer Conference Centre in Leamington on Wednesday (August 10) from 4pm.

This gig will have the band performing with Classical Indian singer and dancer Awantika Dubey.

Dave Balen, a long time student and practitioner of Indian music has worked with Awantika previously and introduced her to the band.

They said: “ Awantika’s highly rhythmic movement, amplified by the bells on her ankles and stamping feet, will make a formidable partner to our rhythm section.

“She and the band have explored both Indian material and our tunes in putting together a unique and uplifting programme that will also be fun.”

Interplay recently entertained the crowds waiting for the Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony in the Pump Rooms Gardens, closing out the live entertainment provided by the District Council.

Details and ticket links for the two events are on display at wegottickets.com

Musical Exchanges is being promoted by In The Moment with support from Leamington and Warwick town councils.