Shropshire Star

Music for everybody from formidable pair

Trish Clowes said it was lovely to be back in her home town of Shrewsbury.


She brought her tenor saxophone and pianist Ross Stanley to perform an eclectic programme of originals and arrangements which appealed to lovers of jazz and classical music alike. This gig was an enterprising evening, part of Shropshire Music Trust’s welcome return to live music, given to an appreciative audience in Shrewsbury School’s Maidment Building.

These two musicians are a formidable partnership. Mr Stanley is clearly an admirer of Debussy. He has a brilliant light touch and can conjure up an exquisite sound palette which is always sensitive to the weaving, soaring and sometimes lyrical sounds of the saxophone.

Both players are gifted with an extraordinary musical intelligence allied to a prodigious technical ability. Their driving performances never once left us feeling that drums and bass were lacking!

Trish Clowes plays with a beautiful full tone through the entire range of the instrument and, unlike the old school of sax players, never finished a tune with a flourish. Rather, her dying notes were gently coaxed from the horn, a fine demonstration of her technique.

Two works from the classical repertoire –“Nunc Dimittus” by Herbert Howells and a fugue by Marcel Dupre – gave us examples of their respect for these composers while also showcasing their ability to improvise within the classical idiom.

Trish’s own composition “Time” opened the gig while another Clowes original, “Free to Fall” ended the evening. Each gave free rein to both artists’ improvisational skills.

It was a fascinating evening and a bold initiative by the Music Trust. There really was something for everybody.

Review by Andrew Petch

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