Producers Fane Productions hope that the concert planned for September 20th 2019 at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall will be a fitting tribute following Michel Legrand’s passing at the weekend.
In a statement from producers Fane Productions, James Albrecht said: ‘Very sadly, only a week and a half after announcing our September 20th concert with Michel Legrand and the Ronnie Scotts Jazz Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall, we learned of his passing. It is no more than four months since Michel’s unforgettable concert with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, also at the Royal Festival Hall, co-produced by Fane Productions and Ronnie Scott’s. Aged 86, and certainly physically and vocally a little frail, Michel nonetheless conducted the 68-piece orchestra and rhythm section with total assurance, and his genius at the piano was as evident as ever. In a concert, billed as ‘Michel Legrand: 60 years of Music and Movies’, we were taken on a magical and nostalgic journey through some of the 20th century’s most memorable film scores whilst clips from The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, The Thomas Crown Affair, Summer of 42, Yentil and many more screened above the orchestra. The evening had a tangible sense of occasion, even more so in retrospect now that we know it was to be Michel’s last appearance in the UK. What a privilege to have been there.’
The concert in September was to have been a celebration of Michel Legrand’s international standing as a jazz musician, pairing him up with one of the world’s great jazz big bands, in an evening inspired by his legendary 1999 album Big Band. With the full support of Michel’s management team at City Lights, Fane Productions will refashion the concert on September 20th still with the Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Orchestra and special guests, as a fitting tribute to one of the very last great composers and musicians of his generation. Full details will follow in the coming weeks.