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Midland Youth Jazz Orchestra/Eleanor Keenan, Solihull Arts Complex

THE Library Theatre was little more than half full for this concert - part of the Solihull Festival - which was a great shame because the band and their guest singer produced some great music.

THE Library Theatre was little more than half full for this concert - part of the Solihull Festival - which was a great shame because the band and their guest singer produced some great music.

Just back from a tour of Holland and Germany, MYJO were swinging from the off on numbers like Strike Up the Band and the old Lionel Hampton warhorse, Flying Home. A medley of Henry Mancini songs including the Pink Panther theme and Moon River provided a very effective tribute to a marvellous composer.

MYJO benefit greatly from having in their ranks a number of young musicians from Birmingham Conservatoire, among them Alex Woods on alto saxophone. Tenor player Callum Roxburgh was also outstanding.

Trumpeters Tom Sharp and Nick Dunham hit the high notes soloing on Slow Boat to China and Tom Dunnett on trombone showed off his considerable skills on the slower You’re Sensational from High Society.

Eleanor Keenan has spent much of her singing career with big bands, in particular the Syd Lawrence Orchestra, and was totally at home with MYJO backing her. You Took Advantage of Me and Hello Young Lovers were among her numbers that came across well but I also liked very much her plaintive Way He Makes Me Feel from the film Yentl, accompanied only by pianist Aled Walker.

 

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