Michael Kilpatrick

Michael Kilpatrick is a baritone saxophonist, transcribing and performing Duke Ellington’s works with his Cambridge-based orchestra, Harmony In Harlem. Kilpatrick’s transcription of Such Sweet Thunder was performed at the Royal Albert Hall for the 2016 BBC Proms as part of the Shakespeare 400th anniversary celebration. He has has worked extensively on the Duke Ellington Collection at the Smithsonian
Institution, identifying hundreds of untited manuscripts and bringing to life the previously unheard Ellington.

He will talk about Duke Ellington’s Boola and here is the abstract of the presentation.

“Boola was Duke Ellington’s concept for a “tone parallel to the history of the American Negro”, originating as early as December 1930. Duke was reported to be composing Boola throughout the decade, yet nothing tangible emerged. It was eventually abandoned and superseded by Black, Brown and Beige, written afresh in 1943, although employing much of the narrative of Boola. My presentation is based on my recent discovery of several manuscripts representing sections of Boola, vindicating Duke’s repeated claims that Boola was taking shape. What’s more, putting dates to these manuscripts and tracing their thematic content provides a remarkable hypothesis as to what Duke may have been planning for Black, Brown and Beige.”