Bolney WI welcomed a local singer, Katherine Collett to our meeting this month. Her ‘subject’ was ‘All that jazz’ and as promised we enjoyed a ‘recital’ and a brief history lesson.
Katherine outlined the beginnings of jazz in the 1920s influenced by African-Americans and a product of the Roaring Twenties with its flamboyant ‘flappers’. The speakeasies of the USA were a popular venue for jazz enthusiasts. In the 40s ‘swing dancing’ again originated in the USA - quite frequently from musical films of the time. In 1955 Marilyn Monroe helped quash the colour bar which excluded coloured singers from performing on a stage with ‘white’ entertainers. Marilyn funded a nightclub for a week providing Ella Fitzgerald could perform on stage. She did! By the 60s music from musicals was still prevalent and Nina Simone personified this period.
Today an increasing young population listens to and plays jazz. New artists are heard on line eg PMJ who release solely online and have a following of over a billion fans. Katherine sang an excellent range of songs to reflect these changes from ‘Night and day’, ‘Chattanooga-choo-choo’ and ‘Diamonds are a girl’s best friend’ to a contemporary ‘Liquid lunch’.
Katherine was an excellent entertainer and her session was very much enjoyed.
Our next meeting is on Thursday April 11th at 2.30pm at the Rawson Hall stars Emma Dawson telling us how to ‘Reuse,recycle’. £3 for guests to include tea; all welcome.