Re Person I Knew: Norma Winstone / Nikki Iles / Stan Sulzmann
Tonight sees Winston, Iles and Sulzmann exploring the music of the late great Bill Evans.
“Right now, she is at the peak of her form… there is no jazz singer in the country to touch her.” Alyn Shipton, The Times
Norma Winstone began her career singing standards, but then became involved in the avant-garde movement exploring the use of the voice in an experimental way and evolving her own wordless approach to improvisation. She joined groups led by Mike Westbrook and Michael Garrick and also sang with John Surman, Mike Gibbs and, most significantly, John Taylor and Kenny Wheeler as a member of Azimuth. Her own legendary album “Somewhere Called Home” (on the ECM label) is widely considered to be a classic. In recent years she has become known as a very fine lyricist, writing words to compositions by Steve Swallow, Ralph Towner, Egberto Gismonti and Ivan Lins. Norma has also recorded with great American pianists Jimmy Rowles and Fred Hersch and more recently with British pianist Stan Tracey.
“Iles is one of the most refreshing and promising figures to have emerged in the UK in recent times” The Guardian
Nikki Iles, pianist and composer, was a founder-member of the innovative Creative Jazz Orchestra – working with Anthony Braxton, Mike Gibbs, Vince Mendoza and Mark-Anthony Turnage. Her busy freelance career has found her playing with Peter Erskine (CJO), Kenny Wheeler, Art Farmer, Julian Arguelles, Stan Sulzmann, Norma Winstone, Tony Coe, Tina May and Rufus Reid. Her music has been commissioned and performed by influential ensembles such as The London Sinfionetta, The Creative Jazz Orchestra, the London Philharmonic’s ‘Renga’ ensemble and Tim Garland’s Underground Orchestra.
Stan Sulzmann is without question one of the most highly respected musicians in the UK today, admired by musicians and audiences for his instantly recognisable sound, and boundless creative imagination, and is a source of inspiration to many of Britain’s emerging young musicians.
Sulzmann’s career stretches back to the 60’s, when as part of a uniquely talented crop of British musicians, he played with Graham Collier, John Taylor, Kenny Wheeler, Gordon Beck, as well as leading many groups of his own.