2007
 
DECEMBER
Julian performed with the National Children's Orchestra of Great Britain, on Sunday 16 December @ Fairfield Halls, Croydon.
NOVEMBER
The Bridgetower tour continued @ Warwick Arts Centre (2nd); Hall for Cornwall, Truro (7th); Exeter Corn Exchange (9th); Malvern Festival Theatre (13th); Sheffield Lyceum Theatre (17th); De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill-on-Sea (24th) and Bridgewater Hall, Manchester (28th).
The finals of The Pianist Magazine's Competition for Outstanding Amateurs took place on Saturday 17 November @ London's Cadogan Hall. Three Jazz finalists performed to a jury comprising Julian, Jason Rebello, Gwilym Simcock and Jamie Cullum. The winner will get to perform with the Julian Joseph Big Band at a top London jazz venue in 2008.
OCTOBER
Julian Joseph acoustic trio @ the Halesworth Arts Festival, Sunday 14 October.
The UK tour of Julian's opera, Bridgetower, opened at the Cambridge Arts Theatre on Tuesday 23 October before going to the Hackney Empire on Thursday 25 October.
SEPTEMBER
On Saturday 1 September @ 7.30 pm, Julian joined the National Children's Orchestra of Great Britain at Manchester's Bridgewater Hall for a concert featuring his original arrangement of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue and a movement from his orchestral suite Symphonic Story: The Great Exception, 'Spiritual Fiction or Fact?'.
Tune Up! 2007 presented the Chris Mountford Collective with the Streetlights Jazz Faculty @ Jerwood Hall, LSO St Luke's, 161 Old Street, London EC1, Wednesday 19 September, 7.00 pm. Featuring Julian, Steve Williamson, Orphy Robinson, Byron Wallen and Mark Hodgson.
JULY
London premiere performances of Julian's new opera, Bridgetower, commissioned by the City of London Corporation for the City of London Festival, with a libretto by Mike Phillips and in collaboration with English Touring Opera @ LSO St Luke's, 161 Old Street, London, Thursday 5 to Saturday 7 July.
Julian Joseph Quartet @ the Osijek Jazz Festival, Croatia, Tuesday 10 July.
"An Evening With Julian Joseph": Julian Joseph Acoustic Trio @ Cliveden House, Cliveden, Taplow, Berks, Sunday 22 July.
MAY
With Mark Latimer @ Norfolk & Norwich Festival, Thursday 10 May.
Julian Joseph Trio @ The Shed, Brawby, Malton, North Yorkshire, Saturday 19 May.
Duet with Steve Williamson @ St Ives Jazz Club, Western Hotel, Royal Square, St Ives, Tuesday 22 May.
APRIL
Julian Joseph Trio ~ Mark Hodgson (bass), Gary Husband (drums) ~ with special guest Steve Williamson (saxophone) @ Pizza Express Jazz Club Soho, 10 Dean Street, London, W1, Monday 2 & Tuesday 3 April.
With Cleveland Watkiss and the Liepaja Symphonic Orchestra, Friday 27 & Saturday 28 April, as part of Liepaja Jazz '07, Liepaja, Latvia.
FEBRUARY
With Mark Latimer @ St George's, Great George Street, Bristol, Thursday 1 February, 8.00pm.
 
NEWS
2007 BRECON JAZZ FESTIVAL HIGHLIGHTS ON BBC FOUR
Humphrey Lyttelton - Who Else But Humph? - Friday 1 February, 8.30 pm: This special programme explores the career of one of Britain's most well known and loved performers - a trumpeter who had the admiration of the great Louis Armstrong and is also famous for his wit and long running radio show, "I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue".
Joe Lovano - A Life in Jazz - Friday 8 February, 8.30 pm: Julian talks to American saxophonist, Joe Lovano, artist in residence at the 2007 Brecon Jazz Festival.
Women in Jazz - Friday 15 February, 8.30 pm: Julian meets four very different female jazz musicians to understand their creativity and discuss their musical influences. Jessica Williams is an American jazz pianist who started her career playing in the clubs of San Francisco's 70's jazz scene. Rising British star Zoe Rahman is one of Britain's shining talents and Japanese performer Hiromi is causing a real stir wherever she plays. The programme also features a performance by British jazz vocalist Tina May.
World of Jazz - Friday 22 February, 8.30 pm: Julian meets some of the top jazz fusion acts and finds out about their musical roots. Roberto Pla's Latin Jazz Orchestra, Eduardo Niebla and Jazz Jamaica are all featured.
 
KEY-STAGE 3 RESOURCE: BRIDGETOWER
The City of London Festival has released a new key-stage 3 web resource - George Bridgetower: Art, Liberty & Slavery, 1807 - which focuses on the life and times of the young black violin prodigy featured in Julian's new jazz opera, Bridgetower - A Fable of 1807. See education page for more details.
 

BBC RADIO 4 MUSIC FEATURE

On Radio 4's Music Feature broadcast on Tuesday 4 December Julian explored the lives and careers of black classical musicians in Britain, from royal trumpeters in Henry VIII's court to the revered composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, who died in 1912 at the age of just 37. Click here to listen.

THE PIANISTS: Competition for Outstanding Amateurs, 2007

The Final: Jazz winner Will Michael's performance included his own composition ‘Four Bars for Bill’ between ‘On Green Dolphin Street’ (Kaper & Washington) and ‘Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams’ (Koehler, Barris & Moll).

The Pianists Competition winner Will Michael with the judges
 

BRIDGETOWER UK TOUR, OCTOBER-NOVEMBER 2007

"Julian Joseph - opera star? Certainly. Britain's most storming jazz pianist is also a skilled composer and orchestrator, and his artful score for the story of George Bridgetower, a black violin prodigy feted by 18th-century high society, deserved its standing ovation last night. A detailed jazz opera of many rhythmic variations and mood swings, it was also richly melodic and as comfortable for classically trained singers to perform as any such work since Porgy and Bess." Jack Massarik, London Evening Standard, October 2007.

 

"Joseph has done far more than write a jazzy opera. The score lets the nine-piece band breathe while tapping into orchestral colours, and seamlessly blends composition and improvisation. Joseph accurately references the compositional techniques of the period, merging the disciplines of classical opera and jazz. Supporting operatic vocals with walking bass worked a treat." Mike Hobart, Financial Times, October 2007.

Bridgetower is featured on the BBC London website. Click here for video.

 
JAZZWISE MAGAZINE

Julian is featured in the July 2007 issue of Jazzwise. He talks about his his new opera, Bridgetower, his career as a musican and composer, and how he sees the future of jazz in Britain.

"I express myself as a jazz musician because I find that it’s the freest and most enabling artform to do what I envisage. I see jazz as the great absorber but I just thought one of the big things missing from jazz is dramatic works..."

"I love stories and I love the movies, I love books so I want to tell stories. And I just thought I wanna write an opera. Classical music doesn’t need me to write an opera because my palette is a jazz one and I put everything into that."

Click here to read more.

   
BRIDGETOWER ~ A NEW OPERA FOR THE CITY OF LONDON FESTIVAL
George Bridgetower

Julian has been commissioned to write a new opera for the 2007 City of London Festival, which this year will be commemorating the 200th anniversary of the first British parliamentary bill to abolish slavery. Bridgetower will be a jazz opera, with a libretto by Mike Phillips and directed by Helen Eastman in collaboration with English Touring Opera.

The story is based on the life of Polish-born violin prodigy, George Bridgetower, the son of an Abyssinian ex-slave, who came to London from Europe in 1789 to escape the French Revolution. He performed to George III and the Prince Regent, who in 1791 became his patron. He was also a great friend of Beethoven, with whom he gave the first performance of his Kreutzer Sonata, and which Beethoven subsequently dedicated to him.

London premiere performances of Bridgetower will take place in LSO St Luke's from 5-7 July. Click here for more info. Click here to read the Sunday Independent Magazine feature, 24 June 2007.

   
LONDON'S JAZZ LEGENDS: THE SOUTHERN SYNCOPATED ORCHESTRA

In 1919 the Southern Syncopated Orchestra was the first band to popularise music of black origin in Britain. It transformed London's cultural life and left an important legacy. The SSO was formed by the American composer Will Marion Cook and comprised 27 musicians and 19 singers from the British West Indies, West Africa and the US, amongst whom was the legendary Sidney Bechet. He first played soprano saxophone in the band, having discovered the instrument in a shop window in Soho's Wardour Street.

Julian talks to Kurt Barling on BBC London News. Click here to go to their feature page and watch the report, or here to watch the full interview, and an exclusive performance of 'Body and Soul' with vocalist Terri Quaye.

 
The Southern Syncopated Orchestra
     
'BAND ON THE WALL' CAMPAIGN
As a result of the campaign, supported by Julian and many others, to re-open Manchester's famous music venue, 'Band on the Wall' which closed in January 2006, the Heritage Lottery Fund has now approved the venue's grant application and the Arts Council's management team have recommended final grant support of the project. This latter recommendation will go to the full Arts Council on 3rd July. Given a good outcome there, 'Band on the Wall' will be able to proceed with the project.
LONDON CONNECTIONS
Julian can be heard on a new CD ~ London-Paris Connection ~ produced by saxophonist/clarinettist David Jean-Baptiste, featured exclusively on the London-Paris Eurostar train. They are joined by Nicolas Genest on trumpet, Eric Vinceno on bass and Benjamin Sanz on drums.
Listen to: Puszczykowo (mp3); Morning Metropolis (mp3).