On 13 February 1976, experimental rock band This Heat played its first show. Now, 40 years later, founding members Charles Bullen and Charles Hayward reunite to perform new interpretations of their music.
Arguably the most inventive band to emerge from the UK’s fruitful DIY scene in the 70s, This Heat’s career may have been short-lived, but its legacy continues to grow in stature and relevance. Still sounding as wild and original as when it was written, their music has as much in common with modern composers like John Cage as their art-rock contemporaries Gang of Four and The Pop Group.
Matching jagged post-punk guitar sounds with hard rhythms, dub production techniques and tape loops, here the band’s twisting, freeform songs are fully realised live.
...this doesn’t feel like nostalgia, but a new beginning.
— The Guardian
In assocation with I-D.A Projects and Room 237
The seventh solo record from Mercury-nominated singer Carleen Anderson is her ‘best and bravest yet, a deeply poetic take on belonging and exile that pulses with ideas and life’ (The Evening Standard).
Cage Street Memorial chronicles a century of family heritage, performed live by Anderson with Orphy Robinson on vibraphone, percussion from Crispin Robinson, Samy Bishai on violin and Renell Shaw on bass.
Acknowledged by BBC 6Music's Gilles Peterson as one of the most powerful singer/songwriters of her generation, Carleen Anderson has collaborated with musicians including Paul Weller and Ramsey Lewis and was vocalist and composer for the Young Disciples whose album Road to Freedom brought the group international recognition.
For live performances you have to see Carleen Anderson at least three times in your life. She’s someone I’d hang around all day just to hear her sound check.
Following his sold-out show at the 2016 EFG London Jazz Festival with Joshua Redman, Brad Mehldau returns to the up close and personal surroundings of the Howard Assembly Room.
Over the last two decades, this American jazz pianist, composer, and arranger has transformed the paradigm of jazz and classical performance.
Mehldau’s intellect feeds an inspired range of expression and intensity, showing his genius for taking predictable materials to unpredictable destinations.
The Trio will be playing music from their latest album Blues and Ballads, released on Nonesuch Records.
Hailing from Northern Estonia, fiddler/singer Maarja Nuut combines traditional dance tunes and songs with live electronics to create an intricate layered soundscape - a space where minimalism and experimental music meet the village musical traditions of pre-war Europe.
Released in Spring 2016, her second album Une Meeles explores the boundary between reality and dreams.
Named as one of the top 10 albums of 2016 by fRoots, the album was also picked by Songlines for their ‘Top of the World’ accolade: ‘One of the best releases of 2016…an exceptional listen that draws influences from her Estonian roots and displays her promising talent’.
That’s what it sounds like when the snow sings
Simon Le Bon
10 May 2017
Howard Assembly Room
The renowned fantasy and science fiction writer China Miéville talks about the Russian revolution, both as a political event of profound and ongoing consequence and as a breathtaking story.
It is the story of the extraordinary months between February and October 1917, of the forces and individuals who helped define it, of their intrigues, and catastrophes.
Miéville ranges from familiar names like Lenin and Trotsky to their opponents Kornilov and Kerensky; from the squabbles of urban activists to the remotest villages of a sprawling empire.
China Miéville is the multi-award-winning author of many works of fiction and non-fiction. His fiction includes The City & the City, Embassytown and This Census-Taker, and has won the Hugo, World Fantasy and Arthur C. Clarke awards; his non-fiction includes the photo-illustrated essay London’s Overthrow.
In partnership with Verso
Liberty Lecture, in association with the University of Leeds
Classic film with original score played live by the Orchestra of Opera North.
Cult 1927 sci-fi classic Metropolis is a triumph of German Expressionism and remains one of the most influential films ever made. With its depiction of a futuristic cityscape and an alluring female robot, Metropolis is the mother of sci-fi cinema, influencing Blade Runner and Star Wars, among countless others.
Directed by the legendary Fritz Lang, its jaw-dropping production values, iconic imagery and modernist grandeur remain as powerful as ever.
The original chamber orchestra version of its powerful score by German composer Gottfried Huppertz is performed by the Orchestra of Opera North, conducted by Hugh Brunt.
It should be in everyone’s film library
Dir. Fritz Lang (1927); Cert PG (contains mild violence and nudity); 153 mins
Film by courtesy of Friedrich-Wilhelm-Murnau-Stiftung
Institute Music by courtesy of Ries & Erler
Puccini's thrilling final opera performed as the latest of our acclaimed concert stagings.
In ancient Beijing, Princess Turandot decrees that she will marry the prince who can solve three riddles. Those who fail are put to death. Prince Calaf, dazzled by her beauty, determines to win her despite the pleas of the servant girl Liu who is secretly in love with him.
Puccini’s last opera includes music of exotic colour and overwhelming power, including the famous and instantly recognisable ‘Nessun Dorma’.
Following in the wake of its world-beating Ring cycle, Turandot is the latest in Opera North’s celebrated series of concert stagings of epic operas.
Approximately 2 hours and 20 minutes
Sung in Italian with English titles
Leeds International Festival, Futuresound and the Howard Assembly Room present Jazz Jamaica.The mighty Jazz Jamaica have earned their reputation as ‘one of the UK’s leading good-time bands’ (The Independent) for their exuberant live performances and critically-acclaimed recordings over the past two decades.
In 1991, inspired by the rhythms of traditional Jamaican music and the largely improvisational nature of jazz, leading double bassist Gary Crosby turned a musical concept into a joyful reality. His vision - a fusion of mento, ska, reggae and jazz, classic and modern jazz standards alongside Jamaican folk songs - resulted in Jazz Jamaica.
Since then, a stream of talented young jazz musicians have joined the Jazz Jamaica project.
For Leeds International Festival, the 10-piece version of the band brings their exhilarating, spontaneous sound to the Howard Assembly Room.
Although separated by an ocean, centuries of shared cultural heritage connect Cuba and West Africa, and the same irrepressible rhythms are crucial to the music of both.
Hence 'AfroCubism'; an album recorded in 2010 (although originally planned – and thwarted, by visa problems – back in the 1990s) by a loose-knit collection of Malian musicians. The album – conceived and produced by Nick Gold and thus released on World Circuit Records - can be found here.
This new project, AfroCubism Revisited, explores both some of the music of the original album itself and the rich historical vein of exchange and collaboration in the music lives of Cuba and West Africa.
The unique project brings together one veteran from the original sessions – N’goni master Bassekou Kouyaté – with a whole new ensemble of collaborators to explore once more the wealth of possibilities offered by the union of these two traditions. He’s joined by the Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita and a trio of Cuban virtuosos – Yelfris Valdés (trumpet), Ednar Enrique Bosch Landa, aka Piki, (guitar) and Hammadi Valdés (percussion) – to revisit and reimagine their shared, captivating, musical roots.
Produced by Opera North Projects
At the end of his life, Lenin wrote ‘we didn’t know everything’, acknowledging the dilemmas he faced on the road to revolution and beyond.
From the first stirrings of revolutionary fervour, Lenin sought the answer to dilemmas that still resonate today: is terrorism ever a useful tactic? Can imperial wars ever be supported? What is the moral justification for seizing power? What role does friendship or love play in revolution?
Broadcaster and author Tariq Ali creates an insightful portrait of a leader grappling with terrorism, war, empire, and love. He asks what the significance of Lenin’s ideas is now, in this centenary year of the Russian Revolution.
An outlier and intellectual bomb-thrower.
— The Observer
Celebrating 10 years of DARE
Jazz giant Courtney Pine’s style integrates modern British sounds like drum ‘n’ bass with soul, hip-hop and deep-rooted influences from across the Caribbean.
For his latest project, he returns to the tenor saxophone for the first time in a decade. Alongside him is UK soul vocalist Omar, whose 1992 hit single 'There’s Nothing Like This' established his truly unique sound, earning him widespread critical acclaim and seeing him collaborate with the likes of Stevie Wonder and Erykah Badu. This very special project brings two of the finest jazz and soul talents together to perform original material for the first time.
Courtney Pine was once hailed as the saviour of British Jazz...he still is
— The Independent
Music by Arvo Pärt, John Tavener and Henryk Górecki
For Eastertime this year, the string section and soloists of the Orchestra of Opera North perform a concert of music inspired by the composers that feature on the soundtrack to Paolo Sorrentino’s love letter to the Eternal City, Rome.
The Great Beauty soundtrack includes pieces by Arvo Pärt, William Byrd and Henryk Górecki, and for this concert a hand-picked programme of pieces by these composers will fill the Howard Assembly Room.
The programme includes Festina Lente by Arvo Pärt, William Byrd’s Fantasia a 6 and Henryk Górecki’s Symphony No. 3 (one of the highest selling classical recordings of all time on CD).
|Arvo Pärt||Festina Lente|
|Vaughan Williams||Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis|
|Byrd||Fantasia in G|
|Vladymir Martynov||The Beatitudes|
|Gorecki||Symphony no.3 III Lento — Cantabile-semplice|