We were invited by event sponsor Renault at Jazz Middelheim, and as a French company befits, elegance and style were de rigueur... From the terraces of the Chateau Brandt we could watch (and listen) to the tent where the concerts were held.
The latest edition of the Antwerp Jazz Festival proved to be a hit again. Main sponsor Renault invited me to the event, which I attended on the opening night, and it certainly was great to hear and see amongst others the Brussels Jazz Orchestra, Toots Thielemans, and enjoy the music.
Hans Knol ten Bensel
In the magnificent settings of the Chateau Brandt in the MiddelheimPark the festval started off on Friday August 12 with a concert of the Trio Grande, featuring the pianist Matthew Bourne. The Trio itself consists of Michel Debrulle (drums, percussion) Michel Massot (tuba, trombone), Laurent Dehors (sax, clarinet, bagpipe and mouthharp).
You could enjoy the good Jazz music through the Bose Sound System of the Renault Mégane... parked on the Jazz Middelheim grounds before the Chateau Brandt
The trio exists already some 15 years, but found the last few years a welcome addition with British pianist and natural improvising talent Matthew Bourne.
The music is a mix of jazzy and classic music sounds, mixed with eastern music and fairy ground tunes. One could call it urban folk. The music is quite accessible and attractive, and certainly was a splendid opener of the night.
Next came the Brussels Jazz Orchestra with Bert Joris. Bert is a veteran of the festival, and has made more than 20 appearances at the Festival. This time, he is a trumpet soloist of the Brussels Jazz Orchestra. (See the photo above) He is also the house composer of this orchestra, and his youngest album, Signs and Signatures, is the latest fruit of this cooperation.
Good old Toots…
Although Toots is reaching the age of 89, he is still going (very) strong, and he gave a magnificent performance that night.
He had brought his favoured American pianist Kenny Werner along, together with two wonderful Brazilian musicians: the guitarist Oscar Castro-Neves, and Airto Moreira, a magnificent drummer and percussionist, well known from the Weather Report and ChickKorea’s Return to Forever.
Toots took that evening to classics like “Manha da Carnival”, “Chega de Saudade” and of course his beloved standards. Since his first performance at the Jazz Middelheim in 1981, he never missed an edition, and we can only hope that we see and hear him again next year…
We just let you enjoy the photos in the meantime…
Hans Knol ten Bensel
You Toots Thielemans was the star of Jazz Middelheim...