• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Tinderbox Orchestra Queen's Hall, Edinburgh

Jack Nissan's Tinderbox Project has achieved quite a lot in its three-year lifespan.

Among the latest endorsements for an ambitious programme that aims to provide exciting opportunities for musicians under the age of 25 were nominations in both the Innovation and Education sections of the recent Scottish Jazz Awards. It added to its achievements here by possibly creating a new record for the number of people accommodated on the Queen's Hall stage.

One idea for the project's flagship band is clearly to generate musical events that offer more than a concert experience and in this respect its latest outing, Journey of a Thousand Wings, was a success. Orchestral string players, brass, an able rhythm section and a choir joined forces with Scottish, Balkan, Chilean and Chinese folk musicians and an eminent London-based jazz saxophonist-composer, with added visuals, voice-overs and a general mood of celebration. As a strapline, "Rave culture meets the last night of the Proms" wouldn't have caused the trading standards authorities too much trouble.

If the end result didn't quite match aurally the ambition and behind-the-scenes effort that went into the performance, there were still moments to savour. Chinese singer-banjoist Song Yuzhe's Talking About Birds was given some powerful orchestrations and Denys Baptiste's Let Freedom Ring, although obviously truncated, retained its moving gospel-jazz core. The concert's title track sounded like a good idea that could have used further development and perhaps suffered through coming after the evening's most assured and convincing segment, the Transatlantic Chilean Folk Ensemble's vibrant demonstration of how to keep traditional rhythms and instrumentation sounding fresh. For conviction, shape and joyous musicality, the Chileans set the bar.

Contextual targeting label: 
Arts and Entertainment

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

198872