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Fellow jazz-lovers, I have a confession. Although Ten Part Invention has been a central pillar of the Australian jazz scene for 32 years, and I have often enjoyed their recorded music, I've never actually seen and heard them live. Perhaps that's because they don't seem to play outside of Sydney all that often. Finally at Wang 2018 I was able to remedy that glaring omission, and in fact, TPI was one gig above all others that convinced me to attend Wang 2018.
What I have particularly liked about TPI was: (i) their size, larger than a typical band but smaller than a big band or jazz orchestra; (ii) that TPI comprised the leading lights of Australian jazz in an egalitarian combination; and (ii) that they performed like a jazz equivalent of a concerto grosso ensemble, in which no one instrument dominated but all take turns. Perhaps this is the norm for TPI, but at Wang they took this a step further played compositions by many different band members. A performance that varied from mellow to spirited and back again.
Ten Part Invention (Miroslav Bukovsky - trumpet/musical director; Sandy Evans - saxophones/musical director; Andrew Robson - saxophones; Paul Cutlan - saxophones; John Mackey - saxophones; Thomas Avgenicos - trumpet; James Greening - trombone; Paul McNamara - piano; Steve Elphick - bass; Dave Goodman - drums) performing in the WPAC Theatre at the 2018 Wangaratta Festival of Jazz