The music we play with the Zurich Jazz Orchestra is first and foremost a live experience. In addition to the improvised and free passages that are characteristic of jazz, it is inspired by and also depends on you, the audience, on the moment and the mood at the concert. Over the last six months we have repeatedly and disillusioned realized that a concert live stream does not offer the same experience and can never be a substitute for a real performance. Covid-19 hit us at our core, ruined months of preparation time and led to the cancellation of countless concerts. Not only you, dear audience, but also we musicians have missed them.
But it is never the surprises themselves that are decisive, but how we deal with them: Covid-19 has also put a lot of extra work on us. Concert dates had to be postponed, renegotiations with the invited guests had to be conducted and the annual planning had to be turned upside down. In addition, we had to organize the cancellation payments to the musicians, draw up stage plans that respected the legally prescribed hygiene measures and minimum distances, and so on. Once again, we would like to take this opportunity to thank Bettina Uhlmann for her great commitment to the orchestra during this time. She offered all band members her help with the Corona applications, was in contact with the authorities, set up an aid fund with the help of the support association, provided easy-going aid for musicians who mainly support themselves through concerts and ensured that the orchestra was present on the digital media with numerous portraits. On behalf of the entire band: MERCI, Bettina!
I would like to take the opportunity to tell you about an important change in the line-up of the Zurich Jazz Orchestra: Time and again we play programs in which a tuba must be occupied. We have decided to expand our regular line-up by this position. We are delighted to welcome the Basel tuba player Sophia Nidecker as a permanent member of the ZJO: Welcome, Sophia!
Already by the end of June I received concert announcements, which were captioned as post-Corona events. We all know that it is too early for that. However, under the given circumstances, we will find possibilities with our partners to resume concert operations in some form from September onwards. So we can look forward to an exciting season with guests such as organist Barbara Dennerlein, the fourth and final conductor candidate concert with Lars Møller, Sardinian trumpeter Paolo Fresu and many others.
I look forward to seeing you again soon!