Appearing in The Amersfoort Connection, 8.15pm Friday 30 October
Adam Simmons – Broodje Hadi
Kika Sprangers Large Ensemble*
*Supported by the Amersfoort Jazz Festival
Adam Simmons – Tenor Saxophone
One of the first things I did when joining the artistic team at Wangaratta Festival of Jazz & Blues in 2017, was to register for Jazzahead, the major international jazz showcase based in Bremen, Germany. A month later, I met this tall, ebullient and well-attired Dutch man, who was looking for festival partners for an international laureate program and another month later I had returned for the Amersfoort Jazz Festival at the invitation of the director, Alexander Beets, who turned out to be a fantastic saxophonist also as well as strong advocate for the fostering and development of young talent in jazz. I returned the next two years, supporting National Jazz Award winners, James Macauley and Alex Hirlian in their participation with the SENA Performers International Jazz Laureate Festival and attending the accompanying World Jazz Conference. I first met Kika Sprangers in 2017, who returned as a laureate in 2018, and finally we performed as special guests together with the Codarts Trombone Ensemble. While worlds apart, Wangaratta and Amersfoort share a number of commonalities, not least of which has been a commitment to showcasing young, international talent of high quality. Both Kika and Alex demonstrate this amply. Being invited to participate as a link between these two is an honour. My contribution, “Broodje Hadi” is dedicated to the best kebab place in Amersfoort. You have to work hard to convince Hadi to leave the meat out if you’re vegetarian, but its worth it!
ADAM SIMMONS plays saxophones, clarinets, flutes, shakuhachi, fujara, toys and graduated from VCA in 1992. Since then, Adam has regularly worked in Melbourne, nationally and internationally with all manner of influential groups and artists including: Ernest Ranglin, Nigel Kennedy, Peter Brotzmann, John Hollenbeck, Jacek Kochan, Alessandra Garosi, Odean Pope, bucketrider, The Pearly Shells, BOLT Ensemble, Spiderbait, Zydeco Jump, Kutcha Edwards, Australian Art Orchestra, Gotye, Clocked Out, Tony Gould, Sandy Evans, Noriko Tadano, David Jones, Dave Brown, David Chesworth,Pugsley Buzzard and many more . Adam’s own ensembles include: Origami, Collider, La Societe des Antipodes (French/Australian), Adam Simmons Quartet, Adam Simmons Toy Band, Adam Simmons Creative Music Ensemble and New Blood.
Highlights from the past few years include: third (and final) Festival of Slow Music, launch of Shakuhachi Melbourne (a community ensemble), performed Nick Tsiavos 15hr Immersion at Dark MOFO, conducted a University of Melbourne engagement project with Kids off the Kerb, “100:25:1” performing duets with 100 different artists across 25 nights (with two research papers presented at jazz and social network conferences), released three CDs by Origami and five other CDs on his Fat Rain label, presented five major projects and released a 5 CD Box set as part of “The Usefulness of Art” 2017-18 concert series which was nominated for 2019 Best Jazz Album, was Lead Co-Artistic Director for Wangaratta Festival of Jazz & Blues (2017-18) where he led the Wangaratta Horns of Death, a 60 piece community ensemble in a one-off full set with Spiderbait, and has graduated from the 2017 intake for the Australia Council Arts Leaders Program.
Other highlights include: world premiere of “Travelling Tales” at Piraeus Festival (Greece) with Intrarti Orchestra, Commission for Speak Percussion and Michael Kieran Harvey (2012), Special Award from Freedman Foundation (2004), Music Omi Artist Residency (USA, Fellowship 2001, Guest Curator 2007), Green Room Award for Musical Direction (2003 & 2004), Adam Simmons Retrospective, with 40 different acts over three weeks (2006)
Adam is endorsed by Forestone Japan (saxophones), Selmer (bass clarinet) and Temby Australia (flutes).
Main artist website: www.adamsimmons.com