Nieuw Sinfonietta Amsterdam and The Houdini’s have known each other since their respective foundations 7 and 8 years ago. That was because members of both ensembles were former members of the orchestra of Boulevard of Broken Dreams, an ensemble which performed popular repertoire from the 1920s and 30s. Both the Nieuw Sinfonietta Amsterdam and The Houdini’s soon proved to be individualists, each in their own field. Their shared intensity of commitment, combined with interest in each other’s activities, led to a heartfelt wish for some kind of combined performance. What better vehicle for the combined talents of a classical and a jazz ensemble than Gershwin’s folk opera Porgy and Bess?…. Pianist/arranger Bert van den Brink composed a suite especially for us, giving both groups a chance to shine. The success of van den Brink’s arrangment, the premiere at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw (with a TV recording), Richard Dufallo’s inspiring conducting, and the dedication – and above all the expertise – of Channel Classics, who recorded a number of live performances for this CD, have made the whole project a feast – a feast of old familiars and good friends! Angelo Verploegen, The Houdinis translation: David ShaperoDownload booklet
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