In the 2017 Cambridge Jazz Festival, Robin returns with another masterclass for jazz singers, but one which is also relevant to instrumentalists wanting to improve their skills at leading a jazz ensemble.
For the masterclass, Robin is teaming up with award-winning jazz vocalist, Emilia Martensson, who will be leading the workshop in the morning, whilst Robin will lead the workshop with her in the second half with help from his trio.
Emilia will be covering many areas including: Improvisation as a group; Composing a piece of music on the spot; Performance technique; Different feels and tempos (counting in); How to lead a group and communicate with musicians; Ear training; and Music theory and much more.
In Robin’s part of the workshop, participants will be given practical tips about working with a band, becoming part of the band, and controlling the performance from within and in the moment. They will also get the opportunity to perform with the trio (time dependent). Emilia will also participate in this section, adding her own insight and tips developed through her own experience. As this section of the workshop is more about band-leading and performance, it would be applicable to instrumentalists as well as singers.
Participants will learn how to lead a jazz performance with a group and be asked to prepare two standards in advance of the workshop (not mandatory and instructions will be sent). At the workshop participants will learn about how to prepare tunes for performance, whether this means putting together lead sheets or arrangements and how each differs, or just knowing the song, key and feel of each number in your repertoire. Participants will also be given the opportunity to lead a tune with the trio, trying out techniques that will be discussed, including: communicating feel to the band, counting in, delivering the tune to the audience – accurately and emotionally, developing the performance by singing/playing around the melody; leading the solos in the moment, and communicating endings on the fly.