The ‘Jazzmania’ Big Band
o.l.v. Peter Guidi
The ‘Jazzmania’ Big Band is the final step in a jazz educational system which consists of five inter-linked Jazz Workshops in the Muziekschool Amsterdam. As well as containing own compositions and arrangements, the repertoire consists mainly of material taken from the most important phases of big band history. Beginning with compositions from Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton, the repertoire follows the historical development of the big band from Count Basie and Woody Herman to Thad Jones and the modern arrangers of today.
Throughout the years the Big Band has been very active in the Amsterdam and Netherlands cultural scene, performing regularly at school and civic functions as well as local jazz clubs. It has also taken part in national and international festivals and big band competitions where it has won a total of THIRTY TWO PRIZES.
The Big Band gave several special performances in Amsterdam including appearances at the‘Lido Theater’, and the ‘BIM Huis’.
Regular monthly Sunday jazz concerts at the ‘Lido Cafe’ on the Leidseplein Amsterdam.
Performed in the Stadshouwburg, the Meervaart, the Theater Escape, the Nieuwe Kerkon the Dam, and the Amsterdam Stopera.
Participated in the Big Band Festival Sneek and the Big Band Festival Ijmuiden.Appeared on the Amsterdam jazz club circuit including regular performances at ‘Parker’s’jazz club.
Represented the city of Amsterdam at the ‘International Big Band Jamboree’ held inDijon, France.
Performed at the ‘Gouden Notenkraker’ prize ceremony for the Nederlandse Toonkunstenaars Bond, presenting a special arrangement together with the prize winning jazz group ‘THE HOUDINIS’.
Contributed to the Amsterdan Freedom Celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II. Performed a special programme from the Glenn Miller repertoire. Represented the city of Amsterdam at the ’European Youth Music Festival’ in Budapest, Hungary, where 10,000 young musicians from countries within the European Union took part.
Played at an open air festival organised by the ‘Lion’s Club’.
First orchestra from the Muziekschool Amsterdam to make a professional recording: the C.D. entitled ‘Target Practise’.
Took part in a ‘Big Band Battle’ at the Odeon Theatre. Performed at the Club Meanderone of Amsterdams famous jazz venues. Performance of a specially arranged piece for big band and orchestra in colaboration with the Amsterdam Youth Orchestra one of the high points of the ‘Dag van de Muziek’ festival in Amsterdam.
Represented Amsterdam at the ‘International Music School Festival’ held in Dortmund,Germany.
Took part in a ‘Big Band Battle’ together with the Jan Molenaar Big Band at the Odeon Theatre.
Performed at the ‘Tuschinsky Jubileum Feest’ in Amsterdam’s renowned Tuschinsky Cinema. Official release and presentation of the cd ‘Target Practise’, at the Odeon TheatreAmsterdam.
The big band was accepted as part of the LOKV programme (the Dutch Institute of Art Education) with the aim of bringing jazz back to the High Schools in the Netherlands. Participated in a BIG BAND BATTLE’ at the ODEON THEATER with the HARINGEY BIG BAND’ from London.
Represented Holland at the VENTISSIMO FESTIVAL’ in Mantes La Ville (Paris). Performed a specially arranged piece for big band, orchestra and choir together with the AMSTERDAM YOUTH ORCHESTRA & CHOIR’ in the BEURS VAN BERLAGE during the EUROTOP celebrations in Amsterdam.
Participated in a BIG BAND BATTLE’ together with the AMSTERDAM SWEELINK CONSERVATORY BIG BAND’ at the ODEON THEATER.
From November the Jazzmania big band, together with other groups from the MSA Jazz Workshops, began a series of monthly Sunday jazz concerts at the ODEON THEATER.
The Jazzmania big band represented the city of Amsterdam at the ‘EUROPEAN YOUTH MUSIC FESTIVAL’ in Barcelona, Spain, where 15,000 young musicians from the European Union took part.
Participated in a BIG BAND BATTLE’ at the ODEON THEATER with the HILVERSUM CONSERVATORY BIG BAND’ together with special guest trumpetist BENNY BAILEY. Performed at the MUSIC EXPO’ in the AHOY STADIUM in Rotterdam.
Performed a special programme in the CONCERTGEBOUW AMSTERDAM for an audience of 500 young people to introduce children and teenagers to jazz and big band music. The program was presented by Jeroen Kramer host of the popular childrens’ T.V. program Klokhuis’.
The Jazzmania big band was invited to perform at the PILSNER BIG BAND FESTIVAL in the Czech Republic.
Performed at the STEDELIJK MUSEUM in Amsterdam as part of the AMERICAN ADVENTURES’ week. Appeared at the HOFGEEST MUSIC FESTIVAL in the Bijlmermeer Amsterdam.
In August the big band became the first jazz group to perform at the famous LOWLANDS POP FESTIVAL in Dronten. The concert was a great success.
In January 2000 the band began a run of monthly concerts at the CLUB MEANDER, one of Amsterdam’s major jazz venues. Each concert features a top musician from the Dutch jazz scene as guest soloist, including Toon Roos, and Jasper Blom on tenor sax, Jarmo Hoogendijk and Ruud Breuls on trumpet and Rob van Bavel on piano. In February the Jazzmania big band celebrated its 10 year jubilee at the AKHNATON in Amsterdam. Past editions of the band were reformed especially for the occasion and previous band members, now well established performers in the Dutch jazz scene, were featured as guest soloists and arrangers. In April the Jazzmania big band was invited to play in the JAZZ 2000 FESTIVAL in Budapest, Hungary where it won the Special Jury Prize. In July the band played at the first DUTCH JAZZ CONGRESS in The Hague, at the SCHEVENINGEN PIER FESTIVAL and at the NORTH SEA JAZZ FESTIVAL. In august the band performed at the prestigious Amsterdam ‘UITMARKT’ Festival.
The band continued it’s monthly run at the CLUB MEANDER featuring top soloists such as Yuri Honing on tenor sax, Benjamin Herman on alto sax, trombonist Bert Boeren and Menno Dams on trumpet. In May the band was invited to perform at the HARKANY BIG BAND FESTIVAL in Harkany, Hungary. In August it performed at the Amsterdam ‘UITMARKT’ Festival for the second year running.
In 2002 the big band began a regular monthly performance at the ‘POMPOEN CLUB’, Amsterdam’s leading jazz venue, featuring top Dutch and international instrumentalists as guest soloists. In July the band was invited to perform at the prestigious ‘NORTH SEA JAZZ FESTIVAL’ where it received a standing ovation. In 2002 the Jazzmania big band also recorded a new cd ‘New Impressions’ released by Munich Records. The presentation was held in Amsterdam at the BIM Huis (the Dutch ‘temple’ of jazz) in November.
In 2003 the Jazzmania big band began a series of concerts featuring guest soloists at Amsterdams’ HEEREN VAN AEMSTEL as well as performing in the club ATLANTIS, ALKMAAR and in the club PANNONICA the new major jazz venue in The Hague. In March the big band played on TROS Sesjun Live, Hollands’ top jazz radio program. In June the band also performed in the Amsterdam VONDEL PARK open air theater. In August the big band was invited to play a week in RIVA DEL GARDA, Italy performing at the NOTTE DI FIABE festival.
The regular monthly series of performances with the Jazzmania big band at the popularHeeren van Aemstel continued with guest soloists Jan Wessels, Gerlo Hesselink, Tineke Postma, Loet van der Lee and Benjamin Herman. In June the band won the 1st prize in the 1st International Big Band Competition in Kerkrade. In July the band was once more invited to perform at the prestigious North Sea Jazz Festival. In August the big band was invited to play a week in RIVA DEL GARDA, Italy performing at the NOTTE DI FIABE festival. In October Jazzmania released it’s new cd ‘Further Impressions’ released by Munich Records. The presentation was held in Amsterdam at the BIM Huis (the Dutch ‘temple’ of jazz).
The regular monthly series of performances with the Jazzmania big band at the popularHeeren van Aemstel continued with guest soloists Bart van Lier, Lars Dietrich, Dennis Gabel and Sjoerd Dijkhuizen. In May 2005 the Jazzmania big band was invited to perform at theSibiu Jazz Festival in Roumania where they played a 2 hour program which was broadcast live on Roumanian national and international television. In the autumn Jazzmania began a newe series of bi-monthly concerts at the BIM Huis Amsterdams; new temple of jazz.
In 2006 the Jazzmania big band continued with its bi-monthly series of concerts at the BIM Huis with special guest soloists including prize-winner Benjamin Herman on alto sax. In June the band added to its long prize list (see below) by winning the 2nd International Big Band Competition in Kerkrade. In July Jazzmania performed at the renowned North Sea Jazz Festival at its new location in the Ahoy in Rotterdam – one of the largest jazz festivals in the world.
In 2007 the Jazzmania big band continued with its bi-monthly series of concerts at the BIM Huis with special guest soloists including tenor saxophonist Dick de Graaf and the Oliver Nelson Project. In the summer the Jazzmania big band toured Italy including appearances atBarga Jazz Festival, Abbazia di Spineto, Castello Guidi and the Riva del Garda Festival.
In 2008 the Jazzmania big band continued with its bi-monthly series of concerts at the BIM Huis. In May the band won the 1st prize in the Dutch National Big Band Competitionheld during the Meer Jazz Festival. In the same competition individual band members also won two prizes for best soloist bringing the total of prizes won by Jazzmania to thirty one. In June the band will perform in the Alkmaar Big Band Festival and in September Jazzmania performed at the Divina Jazz Festival in Naples, Italy. In November the band won the 1st prize in the 3rd International Big Band Competition in Kerkrade bringing the total of prizes to Thirty Two.