On October 1, Places+Spaces at the Factory Theatre presents saxophonist Sandy Evans with her new group Citizens of Earth. The group consists of sitar player and vocalist Sarangan Sriranganatham, clarinet player Tony Gorman, percussionist Ben Walsh, bass player Steve Elphick and Bobby Singh on tabla.

Though it’s their first time out as a unit, the members have long histories of playing together. Evans has been studying Indian music with Sriranganatham for the past couple of years, and the new group explores different approaches to musical breath and feeling ‘ inspired by their collaboration.

The rhythmic interplay of Walsh and Singh is well known, and Elphick has been collaborating with Evans for 25 years. Ironically for a group which is pushing the fusion of jazz and Indian music, Sriranganathan is probably the least known to the Australian jazz community ‘ though he is well-known in Tamil circles and in Sri Lanka and India.

But Evans says, ‘anyone interested in improvisation simply must come along to hear Sarangan sing. He’s very moving, and also he’s incredibly virtuosic in the way he can improvise.’

‘It’s a real pleasure to play with musicians who have such a high level of accomplishment in their different traditions,’ she says. ‘And for me it’s also a chance to begin applying some of the influences I’ve been getting from Indian music.’

Evans has a long history of performing with groups that involve ‘non-Western’ influences, but she dislikes the catch-all ‘world music’. ‘It’s meaningless, really. I’ve been studying the Indian tradition for two years, but, for example, Bobby has been doing it since he was 7 ‘ and will continue to do so for the rest of his life. To bundle up all that diversity and tradition and call it ‘world music’ is to neglect the amazing depth of it.’

Audiences to these Citizens of Earth will experience beautiful, meditative Indian music punctuated by high energy, rhythmic interchanges between Walsh and Singh. ‘Expect soulful melodies, breathtaking improvisations, hypnotic grooves and stunning percussion solos as the band redefines the boundaries of jazz and Indian music.’

On December 1st at The Mint, Sandy Evans will also present the annual Peggy Glanville-Hicks Address for the New Music Network. Call Philippa Horn on 0411 606 077 or see

Sandy Evans and Citizens of Earth
October 1
The Factory Theatre, 105 Victoria Road, Enmore
Tickets: $15-$30, 9550 3666 or




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