Mount Lavinia Hotel always comes up with a fabulous and unique event to dawn the Christmas season and what better way than Thanksgiving to churn up the season’s agenda.
22nd November 2012 – Boogie Blues Gospel Pianist Allan Tate from the US welcomes Thanksgiving at MLH, Empire Ballroom, Dinner and Music – LKR4000/-nett.
The entertainment will be provided by Sri Lanka’s much sought after all boy acapella group VOICE PRINT. And the Olivier Franc Jazz Ensemble with Allan Tate and beautiful Gabrielle Jeanselme
23rd November dawns the season at MLH hence lighting of the proclaimed highest Christmas “ever green” tree will be lit up. With entertainment by Voice Print, St Thomas Boys Choir and Olivier France and the Jazz Ensemble.
24th November 2012- A Tribute to Sidney Bechet with Jazz Classics and Boogie Blues, LKR3500/-nett – Dinner and Jazz with New Orleans Cuisine, 7pm onwards
At the Governors Terrace
With entertainment only by Olivier Franc Jazz Ensemble with Allan Tate and beautiful Gabrielle Jeanselme
Oliver Franc’s Jazz (Act 1)
Reputed to be one of the greatest jazz musicians of all time, Sidney Bechet and as Duke Ellington would say, “Sidney Bechet was simply “the greatest soloist and creator of the history of Jazz.” Olivier Franc is widely believed to be one of the best interpreters of Sidney Bechet’s music, recreating the same passion through the compositions as the master himself. This is the reason that Olivier is universally recognized as the best disciple of Sidney Bechet and MLH is priviledged to have him begin the Christmas season at the hotel playing on the very same saxophone that used to belong to Sidney Bechet. Olivier Franc gathered around him a true “All Star Band”, composed of musicians who thoroughly understand this style of music: his son, Jean-Baptiste Franc on piano, and Benoît de Flamesnil on trombone.
On piano is the rising star Jean-Baptiste Franc, son of Olivier Franc and grand-son of René Franc, famous French clarinetist who was in the Sidney Bechet band in the 1950s. Evidently, in the Franc family, jazz is a well established tradition. He is just starting his career but is already very well recognized and appreciated among “stride” pianists.
He has already been invited as a soloist in many “stride” piano festivals throughout Europe and in the USA.
Benoît de Flamesnil (trombone)-
What people say about Benoît de Flamenil is that his playing is the closest to that of Vic Dickenson among French trombone players. And Vic Dickenson was a long time partner of Sidney Bechet.
Allan Tate (Act 2)
A master of Gospel and Blues music. Very moving singer and virtuoso piano player. He started to play in churches across the US in places like New Orleans in the late 50's and stayed there up to the 60's.
He played for a while in duo with the Legendary Sister Rosetta Tharpe. Then he moved to New York City, where he is based nowadays.His career took a new direction in 2011 with successful European concerts and festivals in France and Germany.
Gabrielle Jeanselme ( Act 3)
Professional classical concert pianist and jazz singer.
Completed her studies at the National Conservatory of Music of Lyon, France.
Aside from performing regularly as a classical concert pianist, she developed skills as a jazz singer and is featured in both kinds of festivals and concert halls nowadays. A well recognized artist in both worlds. Is a great admirer of Billie Holiday, she sings also standards made popular by Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Nancy Wilson, but also Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong, etc. She performs in prestigious Parisian Jazz Clubs like Le Petit Journal Montparnasse or le Lionel Hampton Jazz Club at Meridien Hotel Paris. A beautiful lady with a natural grace, bringing a lot of emotion in her singing.