Miles & Coltrane Blue: (.)

Miles and Coltrane Blue: (.) tells the story of the iconic pioneers of the American jazz scene, trumpet player Miles Davis and skilled saxophonist John William Coltrane through theatre, spoken word and live blues. The production explores a world of music, drugs, religion and women, bringing the tale of the men who were 'ahead of their time' to life. These men have completely opposite personalities and find their friendship through their love of jazz.

Due to the intimacy of the venue, with the seating surrounding three sides of the stage area and the jazz band, The Stephen Gordon Group, playing instantly upon entry the audience is immediately submerged into the atmosphere of America in the 1950's. The scene is set by the opening speech, outlining the changes occurring in the USA and emphasizing that 'the soundtrack to this social revolution is jazz’ whilst also introducing us to Miles and Coltrane before they begin to speak.

Omar El-Amin gives an adequate performance as Miles Davis, with his raspy voice reflecting his years of cigarette (and other substance) addiction. Quentin Talley did reasonably well as John Coltrane, managing to capture and build on the emotion of his character especially throughout his powerful monologues, however the script definitely needs more excitement in order to maintain the audience's attention throughout the play.

Although Concrete Productions' Miles and Coltrane Blue: (.) is initially entertaining to a certain level, after a while the constant jazz playing throughout the play begins to get rather irritating and the talk about change and 'social revolution' is quite overdone. This play would interest a specific audience of jazz enthusiasts but regarding a general audience, it would be difficult to keep up interest. If you are nearby the venue and looking for something to do it is worth going to see this show but otherwise it is nothing special in terms of entertainment level and does not stand out.

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Performances

The Blurb

Miles Davis and John Coltrane - two of the most influential and controversial figures in jazz. Award-winning actors, musicians, dancers and poets take you on a journey though the artists' lives, and the legacy they left behind.