The Ember Big Band is based in Elmbridge, Surrey. We play a wide jazz repertoire which includes many of the popular swing standards of the interwar era, through to modern latin and funk. We have over 20 musicians including alto tenor and baritone saxophones, trumpets, trombones, rhythm and bass guitar, piano and of course drums. We are complemented by impressive vocalists. The band is led by the trombonist and composer, Bill Geldard.
The Ember Big Band is making its third outing to the Walton Beer Festival which has now become a regular summer fixture for us (and it’s not just because of the fabulous range of ales on offer – honest!). The atmosphere, superb food, music and impeccable organisation guarantee a perfect summer evening out that makes a real contribution to life in Walton and to the excellent charities that operate there.
We were originally founded as a community band by Surrey Music in September 2009. Over 40 players came together under Cliff Von Tonder and Georgi Bartlett (quite an achievement). As our instrumental line-up became more balanced and our playing skill increased, we renamed ourselves Ember Big Band and gained our independence in 2015. Our line-up, 23 musicians plus three talented singers, performs in styles and tempos ranging from the Great American Songbook to swing, Latin, funk and rock. We perform regularly – sometimes promoting our own concerts, often supporting other organisations and charities. Under our conductor Bill Geldard (one of the UK’s best-known trombonists and arrangers) we have recently performed for CHEER, a charity providing valuable support to the elderly in Elmbridge, and ECL (Elmbridge Community Link) which enables projects for young people and adults with learning disabilities. This autumn we have been invited to perform a two-hour concert (with three singers and a team of talented dancers) on behalf of Shooting Star Chase, a leading children’s hospice charity caring for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions and their families. The show will take place on Saturday 29th September in the splendid 400 seater Hammond Theatre at Hampton School. Tickets, at £25, can be ordered from: www.thehammondtheatre.co.uk or Tel. 0208 783 4421.