On the 30th August 2014 John Surman celebrated his 70th birthday.
The period around his birthday and the Autumn season which followed was a busy affair, including concerts in Europe with his son Ben Surman and singer Karin Krog, performances in Norway with the Bergen Big Band to celebrate the release of their new CD “Another Sky” and concerts in Germany with the Dowland Project.
Surman also travelled to Sao Paulo Brazil in August to perform on the release concert of Marlui Miranda´s new CD “Fala de Bicho …”
The London Jazz Festival celebrated Surman´s 70th birthday with a series of events centered around Kings Place and featuring his long-term string project with Chris Laurence, Trans4mation and, as a special guest, the Australian recorder virtuoso Genevieve Lacey playing Surman´s “Three Landscapes”. In addition Surman performed with the Bergen Big Band and unveiled a short group of choral pieces for a `pop-up´ choir lead by Nia Lynn.
Later in the year John joined forces with Karin Krog again, for a performance of “Songs About This and That” (including especially commissioned video and lighting effects) at the National Jazz Scene in Oslo.
2015 has begun for Surman with the accent firmly on work with younger musicians.
Two concerts at the Turner Sims Hall in Southampton featured The Southampton Youth Big Band performing John Warren´s “Tales of the Algonquin” with Surman at the helm, and a 4tet concert with John joining Alex Hawkins´ trio in a concert of Surman´s compositions. Immediately following these two concerts, Surman joined the participants of edition IX of Take 5, the young musicians development program (insert link).
Projects planned for later in 2015 include solo concerts, further performances with Karin Krog, gigs with his Norwegian `Valhalla´ 4tet, concerts in Brazil with Marlui Miranda and work with Chris Laurence and Trans4mation. A busy year ahead.