Review: Courtney Pine, Botanical Gardens

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Courtney Pine, Botanical Gardens

FOR unsuspecting folk walking past Sheffield’s showpiece park around 9.30pm on Friday it may have sounded as though a dolphin was having a scrap with a hippo – with a cat as referee.

Such are the off-piste moments from one of the UK’s foremost jazz men. But either side of the honking, hooting and squeaking squeezed from his sax, the former Jazz Warrior issued musical good times, not least in the latter half when Latino strains entered the twilight air along with polka and gypsy jazz which got the hordes rising from their blankets.

Unlike the dread-locked saxman, however, Sheffield Philharmonic Orchestra didn’t have the Saturday crowd doing 100 bounces in a row but there was much flag waving amid a varied programme that closed this sell-out series, ranging from Mexican composer Martinez and Haydn’s London Symphony to Romanian dance and The Apprentice theme, Prokofiev’s haunting Dance Of The Knights, as well Prom rousers Land Of Hope & Glory, Dambusters March and Jersulem.

Dodworth Colliery Brass Band opened the Saturday stint by soundtracking the clink of glass and knives on cheese boards with a re-assuring set that embraced Bizet and a Disney medley.

David Dunn