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Glenn Miller Orchestra celebrating golden age of jazz comes to Hornchurch's Queen's Theatre

PUBLISHED: 15:00 10 January 2020

The Glenn Miller Orchestra will soon be performing at Hornchurch's Queen's Theatre. Picture: Sam Berlyn

The Glenn Miller Orchestra will soon be performing at Hornchurch's Queen's Theatre. Picture: Sam Berlyn

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The Glenn Miller Orchestra is set to perform in Hornchurch with a brand of music that started nearly a century ago in the jazz clubs and ballrooms of America and still refuses to go away.

Ray McVay is the director of The Glenn Miller Orchestra. Picture: Sam BerlynRay McVay is the director of The Glenn Miller Orchestra. Picture: Sam Berlyn

American big-band trombonist Glen Miller is remembered by bands across the world for his lively jazz music.

The UK Glenn Miller Orchestra, led by Ray McVay, will be performing two shows at Queen's Theatre, Hornchurch, on Saturday, January 18.

Ray told the Recorder his band is very "authentic" when it comes to reproducing Miller's work.

He said: "It's probably the best band in the country.

The Glenn Miller Orchestra's theme for its performance is The Legend Lives On. Picture: Scott NicholThe Glenn Miller Orchestra's theme for its performance is The Legend Lives On. Picture: Scott Nichol

"We get all of our music direction from the official Glen Miller offices in New York."

The show features Mark Porter and Catherine Sykes on vocals along with the singers the Moonlight Serenaders.

"I always try to put myself in Glenn Miller's shoes," said Ray.

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"His music is very lively and people often get up and dance.

"We've played abroad in many different places including, Japan, Russia, Norway, Sweden and Spain.

"It's quite a busy band, we are very popular - which is great."

The theme this year is The Legend Lives On - celebrating the fact that 75 years after Miller's presumed death, people still love his music.

With bands as diverse as Manhattan Transfer, The Shadows, Chicago and Jive Bunny resurrecting numbers such as Tuxedo Junction and In the Mood, there is clearly still a hardcore of enthusiasts keeping the legend alive.

The first orchestra to use the name Glenn Miller was established by Miller in 1935 but the UK orchestra believes the Miller sound really started with the 1938 incarnation of the orchestra.

In 1944 Miller played more than 80 concerts in the UK before his disappearance in a light plane over the English Channel in December that year.

Ray's band spent much of 2019 playing 75th anniversary concerts to mark Miller's time in the UK and his subsequent disappearance.

The Glenn Miller Orchestra will be performing at the Queen's Theatre in Billet Lane on Saturday, January 18 at 3pm and 7.30pm.

Visit queens-theatre.co.uk or call 01708 443333 for tickets.

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