Ben Cottrell

Ben is a saxophonist and composer best known as the musical director of the Beats and Pieces Big Band, which he founded in 2008 as a vehicle for his own compositions and arrangements. Since then, the band has established a reputation as one of the UK's most exciting emerging jazz groups. In March 2011, Beats and Pieces were named as the winners of the European Young Jazz Artists' Award at the Burghausen International Jazz Festival in Germany.

Ben co-founded Efpi Records in 2009, an independent record label and an important umbrella organisation for the activities of an emerging generation of musicians working in jazz or improvised music. He was also selected to take part in the prestigious 'Take Five' professional development scheme in 2010/11, aimed at 'the UK's most talented emerging creative jazz musicians'.

Alongside his musical activities, Ben is also an experienced and in-demand freelance sound engineer. He has worked at the RNCM as a front of house engineer for many visiting renowned musicians including The Impossible Gentlemen, Ralph Towner, Tim Garland and Led Bib and has recorded everything from soloists and chamber ensembles to big bands and symphony orchestras. Ben is also a saxophone tutor at the University of Manchester and Hope University in Liverpool.

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