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Greasy Chicken Orchestra

Join us for an unforgettable night of music

Those who have enjoyed the spirited live shows before will know they perform in the “Territory Band” tradition of Kansas City, Chicago and New Orleans jazz of the ’20s and ’30s. The band is led by Phillip Johnston, an American saxophonist/composer who lives in Sydney, while still maintaining a musical life in his hometown of New York City.

Leading his own bands as well as performing with others, his work as a composer and musician extends across theatre, dance, film and music. The Greasy Chicken Orchestra is his high energy ensemble with some of Sydney’s leading jazz musicians, playing blues, ragtime and the earliest incarnations of jazz. Think of the 1930s — when jazz was danceable, unpredictable and fun. From New Orleans ‘Dixieland’ to the ‘jungle music’ period of Duke Ellington, from unusual tunes by 1930s artists like Bix Biederbecke, the John Kirby Sextet, and the Raymond Scott Quintette, The Greasy Chicken Orchestra is like a musical history book come to life – or a sneak-peak at the backing musicians of an old cartoon.

The Greasy Chickens Orchestra’s repertoire includes classic New Orleans jazz, mixed with early Duke Ellington and Jelly Roll Morton. Tune tiles include Armstrong’s Potato Head Blues, Charlie Shavers’ Zoomin’ at the Zombie and Don Redman’s theme, Chant of the Weed. Newer additions include original tunes written in homage to the music of the era, such as Lobster Leaps In & Everyone Deserves Everything All The Time.

“An exceptionally individualistic composer and superb improviser…” The New Yorker



Monday 22 April 2019 from 8.30pm to 11pm
Monday 25 February 2019 from 8.30pm to 11pm
Tuesday 26 February 2019 from 8.30pm to 11pm


General admission: $20
Concession: $15

Accessibility services

  • Mobility access
  • People who are blind or have low vision

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