Jazz’n Geek is proud to present Retro Gaming, a concert that will appeal to jazz fans just as well as symphonic music enthusiasts.

Big band and orchestra, led by maestro Lex French, will meet on stage to perform your favorite themes from original titles of franchises such as Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Pokémon, Sonic The Hedgehog, Final Fantasy and more, swingingly rearranged.

Unique in Canada, the concept of a part jazz, part symphony ensemble specializing in video game music will simultaneously immerse you in the comforting warmth of jazz, the grandiose beauty of symphonies and the moving nostalgia of your favorite fantasy worlds.

Dr. Lex French, musical direction

New Zealand-Canadian jazz trumpeter Lex French has been hailed by Radio Canada jazz critic Stanley Pean as “a trumpeter extraordinaire”. He is fast becoming a rising star on the Canadian jazz scene and has been in high demand since moving to Montreal in 2016. He is also a sought-after composer and arranger, and has recently been commissioned to write works for string quartet, jazz orchestra and massed trombone choir.

Lex has recorded or performed with international artists such as Bennie Maupin, Aaron Parks, Diana Krall, Patti Austin, Kurt Elling, Paul Anka, Arturo Sandoval, Nikki Yanofsky, Cheyenne Jackson (30 Rock), Andy Bell (Erasure), Bob Mintzer, Bill Cunliffe, Eric Marienthal, Alex Sipiagin, Jean Michel Pilc, Ryan Truesdell, James Muller, Luis Bonilla, Dick Oatts, Joe LaBarbera, Clay Jenkins, Jim Pugh, Steve Houghton, Jeff Driskill, John Fedchock, Tom Warrington, Larry Koonse, Chris Cain, Bob Sheppard, Fima Ephron, Bill Ware and Esdra “Nenem” Ferreira. He has also released two albums as leader: “The Cut” (2014), “Prevent the Future” (2017) and “Live at the Rogue and Vagabond” (2020). In addition, he has twice won the Recorded Music of New Zealand award for Jazz Album of the Year, in 2009 and 2021.

In Montreal, his most recent engagements include collaborations with the Orchestre National de Jazz de Montréal (ONJM), the Christine Jensen Quintet, the Jim Doxas Quartet, Joel Miller’s Dream Cassette, the Yannick Rieu Nonet, the Emie Roussel Trio, Mark Nelson’s Sympathetic Frequencies, the Eric Harding Quartet and the CODE Quartet.

He has studied with Ingrid Jensen, Dave Douglas, John Hollenbeck, Kevin Dean, Jocelyn Couture and Charley Davis, and holds a doctorate in jazz music from McGill University.

Cinquième Salle
Saturday, May 25, 2024 at 7:30pm

To purchase your tickets visit: www.placedesarts.com

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