The World of Gods

Tommy Smith is never short of imaginative ideas when it comes to cooking up repertoire for the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra, but this pushes even that estimable band’s envelope – and then some. I can’t be absolutely sure, but I’d guess that this is the first ever collaboration between a jazz big band and a Japanese drum ensemble.

The World of Gods brings together the SNJO and three drummers from the Mugenkyo Taiko Drummers (based, like Smith himself, in Lanarkshire), group founders Neil Mackie and Miyuki Williams, and Teresa Brookes. Smith is writing an entire new set of music for the programme based, as the title suggests, on Shinto Gods.

‘It is a tough one, I freely admit,’ he said. ‘I have had to learn a lot about the drummers and the instruments and how they work, and about Japanese music and culture. I’m writing some music around themes of the Shinto gods, most of whom are related to the elements – thunder and sun and so on. I’m incorporating Japanese scales rather than just traditional jazz harmony, so it won’t be simply superimposing Count Basie on Taiko Drummers.’

The show will also incorporate atmospheric lighting effects and elements of choreography for the drummers, and the idea has already attracted interest from several festivals in the months following this inaugural tour.

article from


About macrobert
macrobert arts centre offers an exciting programme of events that welcomes everyone. Choose from a fantastic programme of live events including theatre, dance and music. There is also a full cinema programme with films showing to suit all ages and tastes. There are lots of fun activities for children and young people: creative factories, supervised arts and craft sessions in treehouse, tailor made birthday parties, and youth theatre and dance groups. TICKETS AND INFORMATION LINE 01786 466666 You can also follow macrobert on Facebook , Twitter and Bebo. For special offers and to get all the macrobert news first, sign up for our weekly e-bulletin via

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: