Skip to main content

Alumni Roundup January 2018

Mon 5 February 2018

Our monthly roundup of some of the successes for Trinity Laban alumni.

January has been a fantastic month for our Jazz alumni, with new album releases, countless reviews and several nominations.

Numerous alumni feature on new compilation album We Out Here, which brings together a collection of rising London jazz stars: Jake Long, Twm Dylan, Amane Suganami, Sheila Maurice-Grey, Cassie Kinoshi, Moses Boyd, Nubya Garcia, Dylan Jones, Femi Koleoso, Oscar Jerome and Joe Armon-Jones. The album is available 9 Feb, and the two-day launch event received great reviews from Clash Music, Jazzwise Magazine and London Jazz News, who all praised the talented line up.

Moses Boyd and Nubya Garcia featured in Will Hodgkinson’s piece on the new age of British Jazz by in The Times. Both were also nominated for Jazz Album of the Year at the Gilles Peterson Worldwide Awards 2018, for the albums Journey to the Mountain of Forever (Binker and Moses) and Nubya’s 5ive (Nubya Garcia). The award ultimately went to Juan Pablo: The Philosopher fromEzra Collective, featuring alumni Femi Koleoso and Joe Armon-Jones and current student Dylan Jones. At the same awards, Oscar Jerome’s ‘Subdued’ was nominated for Track of the Year. The track features fellow alumni Joe Armon-Jones, Theo Erskine and Jack Polley.

The Guardian gave pianist/composer Elliot Galvin’s The Influencing Machine 4 stars for ‘brilliantly executed bright ideas’ and named it Jazz CD of the month. There were also 4 stars in The Guardian for another new release, featuring jazz alumni Daniel Casimir and Cherise Adams Burnett: Ashly Henry’s debut EP.

Classical and contemporary music alumni have also enjoyed brilliant reviews this January. Gramophone magazine reviewed Andrew Matthews-Owen’s recent debut solo recording Halo, calling his playing ‘a marvel’. Opera Magazine reviewed OperaGlass Works’ The Rake’s Progress. The inventive production featured eight Trinity Laban vocal graduates who were praised for singing ‘with energy and strong line’. Vocal alumnus Samuel Boden, who sang Telemachus in the Royal Opera House / Roundhouse collaboration The Return of Ulysses, got a trio of excellent reviews. He was praised for his ‘sweet tenor’ by Rupert Christiansen in  The Telegraph, described by Fiona Maddocks of The Guardian as ‘jejune and lithe’, and complimented by Michael Church at The Independent for ‘singing divinely’ whilst ‘careering round the stage on a tandem bicycle’.

In January, two music alumni had exciting career announcements: Johannes Mnich was named as Executive and Artistic Director of the brand new TauberPhilharmonie in Weikersheim, which is due to open in 2019; and former Sir Charles Mackerras Junior Fellow in Conducting George Jackson was appointed Associate Conductor at Opera Holland Park for the 2018 season. He will make his debut conducting a performance of Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte in June.

Composer Dai Fujikura was featured in Japanese magazine News Digest, discussing composition workshops with members of the Tohoku Youth Orchestra (young people who were affected by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami), his experience of studying in the UK and his upcoming portrait concert at Wigmore Hall on 17 February.

In January, leading Iranian composer Amir Mahyar Tafreshipour released Persian Echoes under Naxos, featuring compositions that weave together Western classical heritage with sounds associated with Persian traditional music. Clarinettist and fellow alumnus Helen Pierce performs on the album.

Quartet Bella Tromba, featuring Emma Bassett, performed at The National Portrait Gallery as part of ‘The Late Shift’ series on the 19 January.

Ahead of the Gold Medal Showcase 2018, mezzo-soprano Emily Gray chatted to Katie Derham and performed live on BBC Radio 3 ‘In Tune’. Pianist Christina McMaster was featured on Classic FM’s video playing Debussy’s Étude No. 1.

Once again numerous Trinity Laban dance alumni have been involved in Resolution 2018, The Place’s annual festival of new dance and performance works. Running from now until 23 February, students and alumni are taking part in 29 of the 70 works. (Read the full list). Ella Fleetwood’s satirical and relevant work #nofilter, delving into the intricacies of life as a social media-obsessed millennial, was picked by as one of their festival highlights. Ahead of the London premiere, Ella was interviewed by Crawley Observer.

Fellow alumnus Leon Poulton chatted to The Stage about how his training and career as a contemporary dancer has influenced his professional photography: ‘I use my knowledge of how the body moves to create the image I want”. Also featured in The Stage was alumnus and award-winning choreographer Sir Matthew Bourne, who made it to number 21 in the magazine’s annual list of Top 100 influential figures in theatre.

Ahead of Transitions’ 2018 international tour, Trinity Laban caught up with acclaimed Finnish choreographer Jarkko Partanen, who is working with the company on a brand new piece. Jarkko is a founding member of multidisciplinary arts collective WAUHAUS, which recently won the prestigious annual Finnish State Award for Performing Arts.

At the end of January, dance artist and choreographer Zoi Dimitriou presented extracts on film from her latest project Peregrinus, which explores the act of walking – and of being ‘abroad’ – for performer and audience alike. This public event included a discussion of the research process.

Shantel Ehrenberg was among the selected scholars and artists presenting work at the 2018 Women in Dance Leadership Conference in NYC 19-20 Jan. Shantel’s research encompasses the intersection of dance and philosophy (phenomenology and visual culture), choreography, dance pedagogy, kinaesthesia, and screen dance. Fellow Dance Science alumnus Kindall Payne is currently leading the first global survey of dancers to gain insight on performance injury and prevention. She and her team are currently collecting data and invite participants to get involved.

In musical theatre news, Henry Roadnight is currently re-developing his first musical Superhero which will be performed by National Youth Music Theatre UK as part of their 2018 summer season. Alumnus Jack McCann played Mr Connolly in a one night only concert version of The Railway Children at Cadogan Hall on 21 Jan. The musical is Alex Parker and Katie Lam’s adaptation of E. Nesbit’s 1905 novel.


Don’t miss:

Laura Jurd playing at The 100 Club on 4 Feb as part of Celebrating Women in Jazz.

Camilla George Quartet at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club on 7 February

Emily O’Hara, Chris Eldred and Nicholas Ball running a course on traditional silent film accompaniment at BFI Southbank on 25 February, suitable for any and all instrumentalists and composers. More info

Elly Braund touring the UK throughout February and March with Richard Alston Dance Company

James Newby playing the role of the Count in Mozart’s Le Nozze Di Fiagro this summer with Nevill Holt Opera. Book tickets

The Mostly Everything People, co-directed by alumni choreographer Jennifer Fletcher and composer Christopher Preece, presents The Very Important Child at the Vault Festival from 21 – 25 February. More info

Choreographer and alumnus Joss Arnott commence a UK tour, which includes a performance at the Laban Theatre on 1 March. Alumnus Madison Capel Bird will be performing. Book tickets


Image: JK Photography