As a mere fresher, I was very impressed and even more excited when I learned that my debut gig with IC Big Band would be at the Westfield Stratford Christmas opening. Apparently I wasn’t alone in my enthusiasm, as the rest of the band were (remarkably) focussed in the rehearsals leading up to the gig – which meant we were well prepared for when the big day came.
Upon arrival we were greeted by a beautifully lit bandstand just outside the first floor of the shopping centre, with other performances already in full swing and a bustling crowd all heading indoors as it had begun to rain – damn. We kicked off the show with the first 40 minute set, and although it was cold outside they were soon in the mood; playing a mixture of Christmas tunes and full Big Band charts (though the jazz police would have been disappointed at the omitting of a certain number). A large crowd enjoyed the performance, and it seemed everybody was in the mid-November festive spirit, singing along to the well – known songs (special thanks to our singers, who sounded amazing throughout both sets).
After a coffee and a trip to Gregg’s, and thanks to a very prompt setup, we were able to play our full set and after the first couple of tunes we too were lost in music (specifically Norwegian Wood, but we won’t talk about that). The sun set and an even larger crowd gathered for such classics as “All I want for Christmas is IC Big Band” – I’ve no doubt I would have been singing along myself had there not been a trumpet inconveniently pressed against my face.
Overall, the day was a great experience for everyone. Both bands sounded fantastic, but I think it’s fair to say we sounded even better when we played at Metric in our Christmas gig last night – we hope you enjoyed it!
Published on behalf of Miguel Nava Harris, fresher trumpet.