ZAR Orchestra

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Company: Standard Bank Jazz Festival

“The [South African] big-band jazz ancestors have all breathed on this music,” enthused Gwen Ansell about the SAMA-award-winning 17-piece ZAR Jazz Orchestra, founded and directed by trumpeter Marcus Wyatt.

Marcus Wyatt, one of the nation’s premier jazz musicians, has led a number of projects in recent years that echo the sounds of genre-defining composers and performers in our musical history, polishing the ideas with the new shine of South Africa’s modern internationalism. He has selected a band of top local musicians that displays the juxtaposing power and sensitivity of the big band format, intertwined with elements of traditional South African jazz and contemporary approaches:

Saxes: Justin Bellairs, Mthunzi Mvubu, Sisonke Xonti, Marc de Kock, Janus van der Merwe
Trumpets: Marcus Wyatt, Adam Howard, Sydney Mavundla, Neil Engel
Trombones: Andreas Tschopp (CH), Justin Sasman, Kelly Bell, Alex Hitzeroth; guitar: Michael Bester
Piano: Bokani Dyer
Bass: Romy Brauteseth
Drums: Marlon Witbooi



Photos by Jonathan Rees


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