All that jazz: interview with singer Stacey Kent & in the studio: Swedish jazz led by Rickard Malmsten & artist Mona Hatoum
This week’s show is going to be of special interest to jazz lovers. In part two, the formerly Hong Kong-based Swedish bassist Rickard Malmsten is back in town and in our studio. This time he’s brought vocalist Vivian Buczek with him to pay tribute to the late, great, Ella Fitzgerald.
But first, American singer Stacey Kent’s intimate approach to jazz standards has attracted fans all around the world. One of those fans is the Nobel Prize-winning novelist, Kazuo Ishiguro, who has since collaborated with her on writing several songs. Now living in London with her husband, saxophonist Jim Tomlinson, she’s made 11 studio albums, and many other live albums, and sold more than two million records. Her repertoire ranges from American standards and her own original material to French chanson and Brazilian music. On Monday, she was in Hong Kong for a one-night only concert. We chatted to her before the show.
Born in Beirut, Palestinian artist Mona Hatoum grew up among other Palestinians who had become not wholeheartedly welcomed exiles in Lebanon after the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Now living in London, she’s still keenly aware of the sense of dislocation, displacement, disorientation and loss that war can bring. She uses her works, which include installations, multimedia pieces, and sculpture, to explore the often-conflicted relationship between politics and the individual. They often incorporate everyday objects, sometimes to disturbing effect. “Remains of the Day”, her first solo exhibition in Hong Kong, is on show at White Cube until the middle of November.
The Swedish jazz bassist and composer Rickard Malmsten is no stranger to The Works. For many years, he was based in Hong Kong, and frequently brought overseas jazz artists, particularly from Sweden and other Nordic countries, here to perform. A few years ago, he moved back to his home country, but he still returns to Hong Kong from time to time, and he’s still introducing his musician friends to delight local jazz lovers. This time he’s in town with an ensemble that includes vocalist Vivian Buczek. They’re here with us now.