Celebrate Sondheim with Stella Bass

Composers works to be given 'a jazz twist' in Galway

Stella Bass.

Stella Bass.

STEPHEN SONDHEIM, one of the greatest songwriters and lyricists of modern times, responsible for 'Send in the Clowns', 'I Feel Pretty' and the Oscar-winning 'Sooner or Later', as well as musicals such as West Side Story and Sweeney Todd, is 85 this year.

To celebrate the man, and his contribution to the world's songbook, Dublin jazz singer Stella Bass is touring Ireland with A Little Jazz Night Music: The Music of Stephen Sondheim, which comes to Galway's Nun’s Island Theatre on Thursday September 17 at 8pm. It will feature Sondheim songs, with jazz arrangements by pianist/arranger, Cian Boylan, who has worked with Van Morrison.

Stella bass, who released the album Too Darn Hot last year, and who is the resident jazz singer in Dublin’s Café en Seine, has been described as "a versatile singer who combines maturity with innocence, sophistication with sincerity," by the Sunday Independent; "a class act...her voice possesses soul, swing and pizzazz" by All About Jazz; and as a singer with "a powerful command of her diamond cut-glass voice" by Pure M Magazine.

Speaking about her experience of Sondheim, she said: “I was first introduced to his music in my late teens. Some of it I loved, but for the most part it didn’t resonate with me in the same way as did Richard Rodgers or Lloyd Webber. I forgot about him for a long time, and fell in love with singing jazz standards. However, Sondheim’s magic is in the often 'grown-up' themes he writes about, highlighting the intricacies - and flaws! - of the human condition. It was only when I had a lot more life experience under my belt, that I could really understand his musicals. His ability to write tremendously clever lyrics and beautiful melodies helps too!”

Tickets are available at the door. For more information contact the Galway Arts Centre (091 - 565886 or www.galwayartscentre.ie ).


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