Only two members of the acclaimed strings quartet Van Django will perform in the city later this week, but that doesn’t mean the show won’t have all the musical energy fans have come to expect.
“If you’re a lover of music, you’ll like this show,” Cameron Wilson, the band’s violinist, said Tuesday.
Wilson and guitarist Budge Schachte play the Stage House Theatre on Tranquille Road on Thursday. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show begins at 7:30 p.m.
In addition to Wilson and Schachte, Van Django is also comprised guitarist and cello player Finn Manniche and Brent Gubbels on acoustic bass.
Given the small venue in Kamloops and again in Quesnel where Van Django perform on Friday, it seemed appropriate that Wilson and Schachte — who have played together for the better part of 10 years — hit the road as a duo.
But Wilson told The Daily News the band’s trademark mix of acoustic gypsy jazz, swing, and folk music will be in full form.
“We’re playing a couple of Bach pieces too,” he said, adding Van Django prefers to dance between musical genres.
“I think, in a way, it’s more interesting. It’s not just 1930s swing numbers.”
The music, even without vocal accompaniment, is punchy, driving and rhythmically inventive. Although the setting will be that of a traditional concert, Wilson believes the songs lend themselves to dancing. He and Schachte encourage people to get up and move if they are so inclined.
Wilson grew up in Edmonton in a musical household. His dad played the fiddle and he studied classical violin.
But it wasn’t until, as a high school student, he heard the music of French jazz violinist Stephane Grappelli that Wilson was inspired to pursue a career in music, he said.
“That was that,” said Wilson.
Wilson and Schachte formed Van Django after a chance meeting found them play a couple of gigs together. Wilson said the duo share a musical chemistry that can’t be ignored.
The band’s name is inspired by Django Reinhardt, a pioneering jazz guitarist and composer.
The Stage House is at 422 Tranquille Rd. next to Arigato Sushi. Tickets for the Van Django show are $21, including HST.