Tenor saxophonist Helena Kay (Young Scottish Jazz Musician of the Year 2015, winner of Peter Whittingham Jazz Award 2017) leads a trio comprising some of the most in demand young musicians on the London jazz scene. Joined by Ferg Ireland (Kansas Smitty’s House Band, Soweto Kinch) and David Ingamells (Kate Williams), the trio play a mixture of Helena’s originals and tunes from the jazz canon, inspired by greats such as Sonny Rollins and Antonio Carlos Jobim, and contemporary names like Melissa Aldana and Larry Goldings. Their debut album Moon Palace is released on 7th December 2018 on Ubuntu Music.
Helena grew up in Perth, Scotland and moved to London in 2012 to begin studying at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, graduating in 2016 with a First Class in BMus Jazz (Hons) and also awarded the Anjool Malde Jazz Prize for the highest jazz final recital mark that year. In 2015 she won the Young Scottish Jazz Musician of the Year, and in 2017 she won the Peter Whittingham Jazz Award, the prize of which she is using to record and release her debut album.
Since graduating, Helena has performed with bands such as Barry Green/Helena Kay Quartet, Calum Gourlay Big Band, Scottish National Jazz Orchestra, Issie Barratt Dectet, Helena Kay/Peter Johnstone Duo, Ryan Quigley Big Band, EuroRadio Jazz Orchestra.
David Ingamells has been performing in the UK and abroad for many years. He has participated in several album projects, in addition to numerous festival, concert and club performances. A versatile musician, he has appeared in large ensembles such as orchestra and big band, as well as intimate groups of duo and trio.
Recent highlights include Kate Williams’ album Four Plus Three, Birmingham Jazz Festival, and appearances at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club, Pizza Express Soho and the Vortex Jazz Club.
Ferg is a founding member of the Kansas Smitty’s House Band and a first-call bassist for some of the leading jazz musicians in the UK (Soweto Kinch, Zhenya Strigalev, Jay Phelps, Ruby Rushton, Nathaniel Facey, Reuben James, Ashley Henry, Empirical) as well as for visiting US luminaries such as Johnny O’Neal (Art Blakey) and Leroy Jones.
He now performs regularly in the UK at leading Jazz venues such as Ronnie Scotts, The Jazz Cafe, Pizza Express Dean Street, the Vortex and the 606, has performed at The Barbican, Kings Place, The Cadogan Hall, Glastonbury Festival, the Royal Albert Hall, The Hackney Empire and The Shoreditch Town Hall, and frequently performs Internationally at festivals and venues across the world.