Orchestra blurs jazz distinction

DAVID Theak is set to jazz things up for his band's 10th anniversary.

Theak, a Picton resident for the past five years, is the artistic director of the Jazzgroove Mothership Orchestra.

To celebrate 10 years since the group was formed, Theak and the 18-piece band will tour Australia and New Zealand.

The 42-year-old saxophonist said the orchestra produced a unique sound most audiences wouldn't have experienced before.

"We think of it like the symphony orchestra of jazz," he said.

"Like a classic big band sound.

"It's a symphony of music from musicians that blurs the lines of jazz and rock.

"Our point of difference is we are a group of 18 youngish men trying to do something unique and different as well as being the leading jazz orchestra in the country."

Theak was first introduced to the saxophone as a child in the school band.

From there his music teacher who doubled as a professional musician introduced him to the world of jazz.

He said most people were fans of jazz — they just didn't know it.

And the genre had played a part in influencing most modern music.

"Jazz has always been cutting edge," Theak said.

"Miles Davis was one of the first people to experiment with synthesisers.

"A lot of new technologies come through because of jazz."

Despite growing up on the northern beaches and years in the inner city, the Sydney Conservatorium of Music lecturer said the Picton lifestyle suited him and his family perfectly.

"[We've moved to] this beautiful old house that used to be a medical centre," he said.

"It's like being in the country but at the same time, being a musician, it's close enough to the city as well."

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