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Vimala Rowe/John Etheridge/Andrew Cleyndert play Billie Holiday

James Erskine. | 2019 | 195 MINS
The film 'Billie' proceeded by a a very special tribute to Billie Holiday led by the sensational vocalist Vimala Rowe.

Film at 19:30 - Gig at 21:30

In Detail

Billie (15)

Billie Holiday’s remarkable career was cut short in 1959 aged 44 with 77 cents in her bank account. In 1971, journalist Linda Kuehl set out to write the definitive biography of Billie Holiday. The book was never finished, and the 200 hours of extraordinary interviews remained unheard until now.

Interviews with friends and family, insight from Tony Bennett, and even the arresting officer from one of her notorious drug busts, provide unprecedented appraisal of the legendary jazz singer. Testimony from a chuckling pimp who pressed her into prostitution at the age of 16 is particularly troubling. Other interviewees include musicians Charles Mingus and Count Basie, as well as actress Sylvia Syms. “What was essential to me was to make sure there was enough room in the film to sit back and admire her power, her genius, and also to ensure the audience grasped that Billie’s story was told through the songs she sang,” Director - James Erskine. Holiday died of cirrhosis having been arrested in her hospital bed just a month earlier. A fascinating documentary about a troubled genius.
USA 2019 James Erskine 95m

Proceeded by
Vimala Rowe, John Etheridge and Andrew Cleyndert play Billie Holiday

To accompany the film ‘Billie’ is a very special tribute to Billie Holiday led by the sensation vocalist Vimala Rowe together with two of the UK’s finest jazz exponents on their respective instruments, John Etheridge (Guitar) and Andrew Cleyndert (bass).

Vimala’s performances are never less than expressive, engaging and sensational. She has already performed at the Film Festival in a tribute to Annie Ross illustrating her infectious natural feel for the music. This tribute gives Vimala the opportunity to express her respect for one of the 20th century’s most important musical icons and to bring a unique insight into Billie Holiday’s music. Vimala’s ‘kinship’ with this particular artist has already found critical acclaim through the Café Society show at theatre Royal Stratford, and an appearance by this trio at the Scarborough Jazz Festival reviewed in jazz journal:
“The highlight on Saturday, if not the whole weekend had to be the … performance by Vimala Rowe (who) once again blew the house down with her impassioned vocals … Numbers included ‘God Bless The Child’, ‘Them There Eyes’, ‘Pennies From Heaven’ and ‘Travelling Light’. … Rowe completely changed the tempo with ‘Strange Fruit’. What a set!.” Jazz Journal
Cleyndert and Etheridge need no introduction to regular jazz fans. John’s musical partnership with Vimala has already produced the album ‘Out of the Sky‘ which was elected in the Top Ten critic’s choice of album of that year in both the Guardian and the Sunday Times with the track ‘Detour Ahead’ in the Top Five in the Guardian .’A rare mix of visceral emotion and jazzy intelligence’ (Sunday Times)

NB. The bar will be open during the 30-minute interval at 9.00 approx between film and live gig, and after

Mon 23 Aug 19:30-22:45 (Auditorium)
Film at 19:30; Gig at 21:30

Tickets £17.50

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