The Sirkis/Bialas International Quartet

Israeli drummer and composer Asaf Sirkis has long been a key player on the UK jazz scene and here he returns to Milestones, co-leading his dynamic ECM-influenced band with Polish singer Sylwia Bialas. A colourful and constantly grooving group that moves from delicate ballads to high-energy electric lines and all points in between. Original contemporary jazz also featuring the great Frank Harrison (piano) and Kevin Glasgow (bass).

Watch YouTube footage of Sirkis/Bialas IQ here and visit Asaf Sirkis's website here

“Sirkis is not only an inventive drummer but also a composer of rigour, wit and surprising delicacy”
Mojo magazine

“Sirkis sounding creatively freer and more dramatically inventive than ever on drums”
The Guardian

“A master of creative surprise, it’s on the edge of your seat listening when Asaf’s in town”
Bill Bruford, drummer

“Asaf Sirkis has earned a reputation as one of the world’s premier drummers”
All About Jazz

“There`s an almost devotional intensity to her singing that rarely fails to deliver”
Jazzwise magazine

“Her voice is an astounding instrument, crystal clear throughout its wide range, with a very sparing use of a tight, controlled vibrato. She can whisper as easily as soar, and Polish never sounded so enchanting”
All About Jazz

Admission: £9 / £5 (U25)


*PLEASE NOTE*: details of concerts and musicians appearing are correct at the time of writing although changes are sometimes necessary. Please feel free to check with us before attending.






Somebody who decides to play jazz for a living knows he will struggle for the rest of his life, unless he opts for predictable and soothing compromise. Honest jazz involves public exploration. It takes guts to make mistakes in public, and mistakes are inherent. If there are no mistakes, it's a mistake. In Keith Jarrett's solo improvisations you can hear him hesitate, turn in circles for a while, struggle to find the next idea. Bird used to start a phrase two or three times before figuring out how to continue it. The heart and soul of improvisation is turning mistakes into discovery. On the spot. Now. No second draft. It can take a toll night after night in front of an audience that just might be considering you shallow.

From 'Close Enough For Jazz', Mike Zwerin (1983)


Now, divine air! Now is his soul ravished! Is it not strange that sheeps' guts should hale souls out of men's bodies? Well, a horn for my money, when all's done.

From 'Much Ado About Nothing' (Act II, Scene iii), William Shakespeare (1600)


Onstage, he storms inwardly, glaring at his audience, wincing at his trumpet, stabbing and tugging at his ear. Often his solos degenerate into a curse blown again and again through his horn in four soft beats. But Miles can break hearts. Without attempting the strident showmanship of most trumpeters, he still creates a mood of terror suppressed - a lurking and highly exciting impression that he may some day blow his brains out playing.

Barry Farrell, writing in Time Magazine (February 28 1964)


Late in his career, drummer Earl Palmer appeared in a music video with the band Cracker on the song ‘I Hate My Generation’. According to Cracker leader David Lowery, when Palmer was asked if he would be able to play along with the songs, he gave Lowery a look and said, 'I invented this shit’.