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Coming Up for Air - One4Review

‘Coming up for Air’ is a very special show and Stan Strickland is a very special artist. His performance is a story in words and music of a jazz musician who, having absorbed many forms of music, wants to find his own particular form of musical expression. The story is beautifully constructed and Stan Strickland has such a wonderful ability to integrate music, singing and graceful movement into the story. He is a first and foremost a jazz musician who can play a collection instruments, saxophones, flute, keyboards and percussion. As a boy, he absorbed the music of his home – spirituals and the blues. When he first heard jazz saxophonist John Coltrane, he was overwhelmed by the lyricism and power of Coltrane’s music. The main part of the story is set in Hawaii and he skilfully uses the instruments ranged around him to create different moods – even a touch of sing-along to recreate the happy holiday feeling. There are darker moods as he suffers from a near drowning experience.  However, as he recovers, the music he has been searching for comes to him, and this forms a fitting finale.  Stan Strickland dominates the stage with a performance that is masterful and compelling. *****

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