Big band night for New Year’s Eve

Yellow Arches big band night, New Year's Eve
Yellow Arches big band night, New Year's Eve

Not so long ago on New Year’s Eve – the Fall Equinox – musicians and singers would bring their instruments and play music called Swing Jazz.

The whole local community would gather together and dance the year away in dance halls, community centres, working men’s clubs and pubs up and down the land.

This New Year’s Eve, the folk at Yellow Arch Studios are reviving the tradition with help from the Langsett Dance Orchestra and a selection of special guest vocalists to take things back to the good old days.

The Langsett Dance Orchestra was formed in the early 80s by local big band legend Dennis Goodison as a big band for talented young musicians.

However, it soon acquired independent life as a hard-working dance orchestra for tea-dances and functions in the region before these audiences dwindled.

A reignited love for big band jazz and swing bought the band back on their feet with the help of pianist, Alex Elwood who introduced new players and repertoire.

Following Alex’s departure last year, Sheffield saxophonist Rob Skeet was appointed musical director and has since continued development, taking the band to new venues and new audiences across the North of England.

There will be a special extended set from the 12-strong Langsett Dance All-stars with Niamh Kavenagh on vocals and an eight-piece brass-section in the style of Count Basie or Frank Sinatra.

Rob Skeet said: “Audiences have always loved the sound of a ‘kicking’ big band and with the opportunity to see one perform ‘live’ rather rare in today’s world, we’re sure this will be a special night”

Tickets at £25, including a glass of fizz and midnight fireworks, are available from Yellow Arch at Burton Road, Neepsend, or online at