Cabaret time at VJ’s

October 13, 2010 by J-Wire
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North Shore Temple Emanuel has launched its newly refurbished Valerie Jaye function centre showcasing it in performance mode with the first in a series of exciting concerts

The Mark Ginsburg Band

Now known as VJs, the room hosted saxophone virtuoso Mark Ginsburg with his outstanding jazz quartet featuring Greg Coffin on piano, Karl Dunnicliff on bass and Tim Firth on drums.

The Chatswood congregation has undertaken spectacular renovations as part of its Jubilee Year activities. The celebration of 50 years since its foundation honours those who first built the community and at the same time aims to create a centre that will service future generations in both practicality and elegance.

VJs was partly funded in 1980 by the late Valerie Jaye.

NSTE plans to host many arts events there ranging from music to small theatre, dance and more.

Board member Mark Ginsburg is an active member of the North Shore community and has taken on the direction of the initial concert season, VJ’s has been purpose-designed not only to welcome simchas but also as a cultural centre for artistic endeavours.

Judy and Mark Ginsburg

“It now has a lovely grand piano, good sound system, updated lighting and a great ambience for audiences,” he said. “I want to establish a jazz series in 2011. Our plans are not only relevant to the Jewish Community but potentially to the broader local community as well. Activities are intended to include secular, interfaith and cross-denominational interest groups and audiences.  The Chatswood Musical Society already uses NSTE as their regular rehearsal venue (we collaborated with them on the recent hit production of Children of Eden).”

VJs hosts the band

At the opening of VJ’s, the Mark Ginsburg Band performed music from their successful debut album “Generations”, based on his Masters of Music research into links between traditional cantorial singing and contemporary jazz improvisation. They also premiered exciting new material leading up to their appearance at the prestigious Wangaratta Jazz Festival in November.

Joining them for this concert as guest vocalist was Judy Campbell, Music Director at NSTE. She also leads her own band, MOSAIC, which has toured extensively in Australia and overseas, featuring Kenyan master percussionist, Bandika Ngao. Judy was the Musical Director for the recent production of Children of Eden.

“We want to bring contemporary / creative music to the North Shore, which has been starved of good venues compared with the City and the East,” concluded Mark.

“We’re confident this show will build momentum for future events.

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