@ the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre
19 November 2011
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Henry Threadgill (born February 15, 1944, in Chicago,
Illinois) is an American composer, saxophonist and flautist. Threadgill
came to prominence in the 1970s leading ensembles with unusual instrumentation
and often incorporating a range of non-jazz genres.
Aside from being a remarkable alto saxophone player,
Threadgill is one of the most imaginative of jazz composers today.
Not long ago Peter Watrous of the New York Times described Threadgill
as “perhaps the most important jazz composer of his generation.”
Recent concerts in Chicago have led the local critics to speak
of him as a revolutionary figure, altering the manner in which jazz
itself is going. Said Howard Reich, jazz critic of the Chicago Tribune,
“It would be difficult to overestimate Henry Threagill’s
role in perpetually altering the meaning of jazz..…He has
changed our underlying assumptions of what jazz can and should be.”'
- An excerpt from a chapter on Henry Threadgill from And They All
Sang (published 2005) by late Pulitzer winning author and disc jockey
Studs Terkel – a book about “forty of the greatest and
most deeply human musical figures of our time.”