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2008 - 2009 Jazz Schedule

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Past Events

Sun., Sep. 21, 2008, 7:00 PM - Mos Def
Produced by Jill Newman Productions

[Mos Def<br>Produced by Jill Newman Productions.]

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The consummate artist--musician, emcee, vocalist, producer, and actor of stage and screen--Mos Def premiered his acoustic project in 2003, and the Mos Def Big Band in January 2007, drawing from original compositions and material by Miles Davis, Beyoncé, James Brown, and Gil Scott-Heron, among others. Always bending genres to create his own sound, Mos lithely flows among hip hop, jazz, and soul while fronting his orchestra of savvy musicians. His face is as familiar as his sound; his acting credits include Be Kind Rewind, 16 Blocks, Something the Lord Made, Lackawanna Blues, and Top Dog/Underdog. Part of Prelude 2008: Arts Across America.

Fri., Sep. 26, 2008 - Kevin Mahogany's Kansas City Revue

[Kevin Mahogany's <i>Kansas City Revue</i>.]

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Award-winning baritone Kevin Mahogany opens the new KC Jazz Club season with this rousing tribute to his native city's musical heritage. The Godfathers of Groove--the revered Hammond B-3, guitar, and percussion trio--along with acclaimed vocalist Kathy Kosins join Mahogany for songs affiliated with the Kansas City sound, as composed or performed by Charlie Parker, Count Basie, Jimmy Rushing, Joe Williams, and other greats. From the R&B of "Shake, Rattle, and Roll"... through the boogie-woogie of "Roll 'em Pete"...the blues of "Cherry Red"…to the jazz of "Parker's Mood"'ll agree with the New Yorker that "there is little Mahogany cannot do." Part of Prelude 2008: Arts Across America.

Sun., Sep. 28, 2008, 7:00 PM - The Blind Boys of Alabama and Preservation Hall Jazz Band: Down by the Riverside

[The Blind Boys of Alabama and Preservation Hall Jazz Band: <i>Down by the Riverside</i>.]

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The joy of gospel meets the soul of New Orleans when two of America's greatest cultural ambassadors join forces for Down by the Riverside! Vocal legends The Blind Boys of Alabama are the Iron Men of the music industry. They predate Elvis, Little Richard, and Al Green, but even in their 70s, they continue to top the gospel charts and win Grammy Awards, four consecutive and counting. For nearly half a century, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band has been bridging present-day sounds with the ageless traditions of New Orleans jazz. No matter where these National Medal of Arts recipients play, audiences are immediately transported to their storefront home, just around the corner from Bourbon Street. Be there as these two legendary groups carry their proud musical traditions into the future! Part of Prelude 2008: Arts Across America.

Performance Running Time:
7:00 – 8:00, Preservation Hall Jazz Band
8:00 – 8:20, Intermission
8:20 – 9:20, Blind Boys of Alabama
9:20 – 9:30, Finale (with both groups)

Fri., Oct. 3, 2008 - Jeremy Pelt Quintet

[Jeremy Pelt Quintet.]

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Last seen in the KC Jazz Club as a member of The Cannonball Adderley Legacy Band featuring Louis Hayes, West Coast trumpeter Jeremy Pelt has been voted a Rising Star five years in a row by DownBeat Magazine. Now headlining his first Kennedy Center concert, he has also been lauded for his rhythm and tone, which "strikes a warm balance between brightness and suffusion" (All About Jazz). Pelt's new MAXJAZZ CD November, which was released this summer and features his quintet, is his return to the acoustic format. Part of Prelude 2008: Arts Across America.

Sat., Oct. 4, 2008 - Grady Tate

[Grady Tate.]

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With his classic warm and mellow baritone, Grady Tate has twice been nominated for the Best Male Vocalist Grammy Award--the first for "Windmills of Your Mind" from the film The Thomas Crown Affair, and the second for the 1980s ballad "She's Out of My Life." Yet to many jazz lovers, Tate may be better known as drummer for Duke Ellington, the Count Basie Orchestra, and the Billy Taylor Trio. Urged by none other than Peggy Lee to pursue his singing, Tate is now praised for his impeccable timing and profound grasp of lyrics. He's been heralded by the Village Voice as "the best singer to emerge from the ranks of instrumentalists since Nat Cole."

Sat., Oct. 11, 2008 - Cancelled: Hank Jones Trio with Roberta Gambarini

[Cancelled: Hank Jones Trio with Roberta Gambarini.]

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PLEASE NOTE: As of Aug. 13, this concert has been cancelled due to a scheduling conflict. 

According to NEA Jazz Master and Kennedy Center Living Jazz Legend Hank Jones, "when you listen to a pianist, each note should have a soul of its own." For more than six decades, Jones has taken his words to heart, always playing with a deeply personal style. The New York Times says he's "a great, ageless pianist who's among the last links to the lost world of Manhattan's 52nd Street." In a concert celebrating the 90th year of his birth, Hank Jones brings his Trio featuring Italian vocalist Roberta Gambarini, who demonstrates a "remarkable range and a great flair for scatting" (The Washington Post).

Fri., Oct. 17, 2008 - Steve Wilson and Wilsonian's Grain

[Steve Wilson and Wilsonian's Grain.]

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Steve Wilson and Wilsonian's Grain

Described as "a riveting improviser" by Jim Macnie of the Village Voice, saxophonist Steve Wilson returns this fall to the KC Jazz Club for the first time in three years as bandleader. According to Ben Ratliff of the New York Times, Wilson is "among the best New York jazz has to offer." Buy tickets early as his 2005 performances sold out!

Sat., Oct. 18, 2008 - Terri Lyne Carrington Quintet

[Terri Lyne Carrington Quintet.]

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World-renowned drummer/composer/producer Terri Lyne Carrington is no stranger to the spotlight, having been an industry mainstay since the early 1980s. Her ongoing appearances at the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival and music direction for the all-star concert Billie & Me have also secured her place as a Kennedy Center favorite. It's been more than 20 years since her Grammy-nominated debut, and now her eagerly awaited 2008 solo CD, More to Say, finds her collaborating with the likes of Nancy Wilson and saxophonist Sonny Carrington, her father.

Fri., Oct. 24, 2008 - Allan Harris: Cross That River: Cry of the Thunderbird

[Allan Harris: <i>Cross That River: Cry of the Thunderbird</i>.]

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Following his sold-out engagement during the Kennedy Center's 2006 Country celebration, Allan Harris, "one of the best male jazz vocalists" (The New York Times), returns with the second installment from his Cross That River trilogy project, Cry of the Thunderbird. This theatrical concert, set in the 1850s, chronicles the life-transforming journey of Blue, an escaped slave from Louisiana who makes his way to Texas, where he becomes a black cowboy. With his Cross That River Band, Allan Harris as the narrator, guitarist, and primary singer depicts Blue's cattle drive days and his chance encounters with renegade Plains Indians, Buffalo Soldiers, Dancing Annie, Diamond Jimmy, ex-Confederates, and other characters of color. The music combines jazz, gospel, blues, country, bluegrass, folk, and Native American strains.

Fri., Nov. 7, 2008 - Keys to New Orleans: Allen Toussaint, Henry Butler, Jon Cleary

[<i>Keys to New Orleans</i>: Allen Toussaint, Henry Butler, Jon Cleary.]

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If you're a fan of NPR's A Jazz Piano Christmas, don't miss this spectacular tribute to the music of New Orleans featuring separate performances by three "Crescent City" legends. Allen Toussaint--a pianist, singer, composer, producer, and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee--has collaborated with everyone from The Rolling Stones to Bonnie Raitt, and his recent collaboration with Elvis Costello, The River in Reverse, garnered numerous accolades. Pianist, singer, and composer Jon Cleary's music blends old-school soul with New Orleans's rich heritage, and he has lent his talents to recordings by B.B. King, Ryan Adams, and others. Meanwhile, New Orleans–born Henry Butler, an eight-time Blues Award nominee, infuses his classically trained piano wizardry with a rich amalgam of jazz, Caribbean, classical, pop, R&B, and blues--a mix as eclectic as his birthplace.

Sat., Nov. 8, 2008 - KC Jazz Club: Javon Jackson with Les McCann: Swiss Movement Revisited

[KC Jazz Club: Javon Jackson with Les McCann: <i>Swiss Movement Revisited</i>.]

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Once a member of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, saxophonist Javon Jackson "plays funk with a slow hand...he doesn't beat matters to a froth but allows them to come to fruition in their own time" (The Philadelphia Inquirer). Pianist Les McCann is "a very adept musical showman...his imaginative resources create a fascinating kaleidoscope of musical moods." In the KC Jazz Club, the duo with a band revisits McCann's landmark 1969 album Swiss Movement, recently re-released by Rhino/Atlantic. Recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival that year, the album featured the huge Billboard pop chart hit "Compared to What," a rousing rally against the Vietnam War.

Fri., Nov. 14, 2008 - Discovery Artist in the KC Jazz Club: Dan Tepfer

[Discovery Artist in the KC Jazz Club: Dan Tepfer.]

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Dan Tepfer, The Cole Porter Fellow of the American Pianists Association
Jorge Roeder, bass
Richie Barshay, drums

The Boston Globe calls Dan Tepfer "a brilliant young pianist and composer," while piano legend Martial Solal says he "already has everything it takes: harmonic sensitivity, jazz knowledge, melodic subtlety, and above all, a great originality." An American raised in Paris, Tepfer was classically trained before switching to jazz piano at the New England Conservatory of Music. In 2006, he was awarded both the first prize and audience prize at the Montreux Jazz Festival Solo Piano Competition. Through the Kennedy Center's new partnership with the American Pianists Association, Tepfer comes to the Club as the APA's 2007 Cole Porter Fellow in Jazz.

Fri., Nov. 21, 2008 - KC Jazz Club: Frank Wess Quintet

[KC Jazz Club: Frank Wess Quintet.]

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Frank Wess, flute/saxophone
Rufus Reid, bass
Winard Harper, drums
Terell Stafford, trumpet
Ilya Lushtak, guitar

Flutist, saxophonist, NEA Jazz Master, and Kennedy Center Living Jazz Legend Frank Wess grew up with Dr. Billy Taylor in DC, learning all about jazz firsthand while frequenting the Howard and Lincoln Theaters, Bohemian Caverns, and other local hot spots. He eventually landed in the Count Basie Orchestra for 11 years, where he contributed subtle and sublime interpretations. Now in his 80s, Frank Wess is as popular as ever, as indicated by his Quintet's April 2008 run at New York's Village Vanguard. His last performance in the KC Jazz Club, fronting his Flutology ensemble, led the Washington Post to praise his "soulful lyricism" and "great artistry." Part of "Jazz in DC," the Center's weeklong celebration curated by Dr. Billy Taylor that highlights DC's influence on the development of jazz.

Sat., Nov. 22, 2008, 7:30 PM - Ellington Voices: Classical to Jazz with Nnenna Freelon and Harolyn Blackwell

[<i>Ellington Voices: Classical to Jazz</i> with Nnenna Freelon and Harolyn Blackwell.]

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Ellington Voices: Classical to Jazz
"Dreaming the Duke"
with Nnenna Freelon and Harolyn Blackwell
and Mike Garson

One show only! In this Kennedy Center–commissioned, world-premiere event, two of today's hottest vocalists explore how classical sounds intertwine with improvisational jazz in the inimitable music of Duke Ellington, one of DC's native sons. Bringing together their respective expertise from the jazz and classical worlds, Nnenna Freelon and Harolyn Blackwell showcase how Ellington's compositions blended European classical traditions, syncopated rhythms of stride piano and ragtime, and African American work songs, blues, and spiritual music into an invigorating, unified whole. The inspirational messages in his most famous works will come to light in this electrifying evening, which also includes pianist Mike Garson, a string quartet, and Nnenna Freelon's jazz band. Part of Jazz in DC, the Center's weeklong celebration curated by Dr. Billy Taylor that highlights DC's influence on the development of jazz.

Nov. 28 - 29, 2008 - NSO Pops: D.C. and the Duke/Marvin Hamlisch, conductor

[NSO Pops: <i>D.C. and the Duke</i>/Marvin Hamlisch, conductor.]

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Strike Up the Jazz Band!

Jazz up Thanksgiving weekend with The Jazz Ambassadors of the US Army Field Band. Of the U.S. Army's premier touring jazz orchestra, Principal Pops Conductor Marvin Hamlisch says "the caliber of their musicianship is so fantastic…they're the crème de la crème." For nearly four decades, this rousing big band has received great acclaim both at home and abroad. The Statesman raves, "The Jazz Ambassadors held the audience in its thrall...It required utmost constraint not to literally jump up and down to the rhythm." With Hamlisch and the NSO Pops, The Jazz Ambassadors perform music by three DC jazz legends: Duke Ellington, ragtime composer James Reese Europe, and the Kennedy Center's own Dr. Billy Taylor. The program will also include Dr. Billy Taylor as a special guest, as well as pianist Christian Sands, vocal jazz ensemble Afro Blue, and a special guest female vocalist. Part of Jazz in DC, the Center's weeklong celebration curated by Dr. Billy Taylor that highlights DC's influence on the development of jazz.

Thu., Dec. 4, 2008 - NPR's A Jazz Piano Christmas

[NPR's <i>A Jazz Piano Christmas</i>.]

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Join the Kennedy Center and National Public Radio when top jazz pianists and other artists perform their favorite holiday songs. An annual NPR tradition, the concert will be recorded for later broadcast.  Among the artists performing are Eliane Elias, Ellis Marsalis, Rebeca Mauleón, and Arturo O'Farrill.

Wed., Dec. 31, 2008 - A Jazz New Year's Eve

[Kennedy Center Logo.]

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Grammy-winning ensemble New York Voices is renowned for its unique take on the vocal jazz tradition, often with Brazilian, R&B, classical, and pop influences. On New Year's Eve, they come together with the Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band--a veritable who's who of jazz musicians including musical director and NEA Jazz Master Slide Hampton, Kennedy Center Living Jazz Legend and NEA Jazz Master Jimmy Heath (saxophone), Antonio Hart (saxophone), Claudio Roditi (trumpet), Douglas Purviance (trombone), and John Lee (bassist and Executive Director). After the performance, enjoy festive dancing, a countdown to 2009, and a balloon drop in the Grand Foyer, free with your concert ticket.

Sat., Jan. 24, 2009, 7:30 PM - Benny Golson at 80

[Benny Golson at 80.]

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Tenor saxophonist, NEA Jazz Master, and Kennedy Center Living Jazz Legend Benny Golson has had a career that spans a remarkable six decades: from his childhood days with John Coltrane…to his years with Dizzy Gillespie's band, Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, and Art Farmer's Jazztet…to his continued success as a solo performer and composer. Jazz lovers can't get enough of his "Blues March," "I Remember Clifford," and "Stablemates," while TV and film fans know his music from M*A*S*H, Mission Impossible, and The Cosby Show theme. Taking the stage on the eve of his 80th birthday, Benny Golson is joined by an all-star lineup, ready to trace his incredible musical journey through live performance, photo montages, video greetings, and personal reminiscences. Hosted by actor Danny Glover, the concert features three other Kennedy Center Living Jazz Legends: bassists Ron Carter and Curtis Fuller--also both NEA Jazz Masters--as well as five-time Grammy-winning vocalist Al Jarreau. The program also includes the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, led by musical director John Clayton.

Fri., Feb. 13, 2009, 7:30 PM - So in Love: An Evening of Cole Porter, with Patricia Barber

[<i>So in Love: An Evening of Cole Porter</i>, with Patricia Barber.]

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Cuddle up to your sweetheart and celebrate Valentine's Day a day early with vocalist Patricia Barber as she performs music from The Cole Porter Mix--her 2008 Blue Note Records CD that includes "I've Got You Under My Skin," "What Is This Thing Called Love?," and "You're the Top." JazzTimes calls her "the most fearless, intellectually stimulating, and interesting singer/songwriter/pianist on the American jazz scene." Note: This concert is at 7:30 p.m. only.

Fri., Feb. 13, 2009, 9:30 PM - So in Love: An Evening of Cole Porter, with Ann Hampton Callaway

[<i>So in Love: An Evening of Cole Porter</i>, with Ann Hampton Callaway.]

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Enjoy a sexy, suave, and swinging time and celebrate Valentine's Day a day early with vocalist Ann Hampton Callaway and her Trio, as they take a cosmopolitan romp through the Cole Porter songbook. The New York Times raves "for sheer vocal beauty, no contemporary singer matches Ms. Callaway!" Note: This concert is at 9:30 p.m. only.

Sat., Feb. 28, 2009 - "Dedicated to You": Kurt Elling in a John Coltrane/Johnny Hartman Tribute


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The masterpiece 1963 recording Dedicated to You marked the only time tenor saxophonist John Coltrane ever collaborated with a vocalist, "romantic balladeer" Johnny Hartman. Hailed as "truly a musical phenomenon" by London's The Guardian, vocalist Kurt Elling now creatively re-imagines this legendary recording with Ernie Watts, one of the most versatile saxophonists on the scene today. Elling also welcomes the innovative string quartet Ethel, as well as his frequent collaborator Laurence Hobgood and his Trio. Together, these artists take a cue from Coltrane's ingenuity, layering one of the most romantic albums ever recorded with new storytelling and lush harmonies.

Fri., Mar. 27, 2009 - KC Jazz Club: Edmar Castaneda Trio

[KC Jazz Club: Edmar Castaneda Trio.]

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"A jazz harpist of imposing talent" (The New York Times), Colombian-born Edmar Castaneda has turned the New York jazz scene on its ear, transforming the harp into a percussive lead instrument by producing cross-rhythms like a drummer and choral flourishes like a flamenco guitarist. Still in his 20s, he combines Colombian music, Latin jazz, and bebop with ease, strumming bass lines with his left hand while simultaneously plucking melodies with his right. A protégé of Paquito D'Rivera, Castaneda has performed with everyone from Wynton Marsalis to Arturo O'Farrill to Dave Samuels.

Sat., Mar. 28, 2009 - KC Jazz Club: René Marie: Voice of My Beautiful Country

[KC Jazz Club: René Marie: <i>Voice of My Beautiful Country</i>.]

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MAXJAZZ recording artist and Kennedy Center favorite René Marie has been called "a jazz singer with the talent, the imagination, and the sheer presence to be included in the very top level of performers" by the Los Angeles Times. She returns to DC to showcase her unique take on traditional patriotic songs and other tunes from her American experience. Come and hear her jazz, blues, and pop music blend, which always brings the audience to their feet!

Sun., Apr. 5, 2009 - The Blue Note Records 70th Anniversary--On Tour

[The Blue Note Records 70th Anniversary--On Tour.]

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To mark the 70th anniversary of the premier jazz recording label, an all-star band featuring some of the finest musicians today will travel the world to celebrate Blue Note Records' rich catalog of music. Led by pianist and music director Bill Charlap, the group is comprised of guitarist Peter Bernstein, tenor and soprano saxophonist Ravi Coltrane, drummer Lewis Nash, trumpeter Nicholas Payton, bassist Peter Washington, and alto saxophonist Steve Wilson. Together, they'll explore classic tunes by Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk, Horace Silver, Herbie Hancock, Lee Morgan, Wayne Shorter, and many others.

Fri., May 1, 2009 - Discovery Artist in the KC Jazz Club: Marc Cary and the Focus Trio

[Discovery Artist in the KC Jazz Club: Marc Cary and the Focus Trio.]

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As cool and collected as they come, pianist/composer and DC native Marc Cary for years has lent his imaginative key-work to tours with Abbey Lincoln, Wynton Marsalis, Betty Carter, Stefon Harris, and Roy Hargrove, among others. On his debut recording with the Focus Trio--featuring Sameer Gupta on drums and tabla and David Ewell on bass--Cary brings into sharp focus his many influences, from deep-feeling indigenous world rhythms to bop to classical. DownBeat Magazine ranked him as one of the four "most multi-dimensional" keyboard players on the scene today.

For latest ticket availability, please visit the Box Office or contact Instant Charge at (202) 467-4600.

Sat., May 2, 2009 - KC Jazz Club: John Clayton and Gerald Clayton: Father and Son

[KC Jazz Club: John Clayton and Gerald Clayton: <i>Father and Son</i>.]

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As a solo artist, as part of the Clayton Brothers, and as music director of the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, masterful Grammy-winning bassist John Clayton is a major force in the jazz world. His son, pianist Gerald Clayton, was the runner-up at the 2006 Thelonious Monk International Piano Competition, praised for his "Oscar Peterson–like style, highly controlled touch and dynamics, and rhapsodic, episodic soloing" (The New York Times). Releasing their first CD together in 2008, father and son bridge the generations in a sensational concert.

For latest ticket availability, please visit the Box Office or contact Instant Charge at (202) 467-4600.

Fri., May 8, 2009 - Discovery Artist in the KC Jazz Club: Ambrose Akinmusire

[Discovery Artist in the KC Jazz Club: Ambrose Akinmusire.]

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The Kennedy Center and Monk Institute present the winner of the 2007 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Trumpet Competition, Ambrose Akinmusire, as part of the Institute's ongoing partnership with the Kennedy Center. Akinmusire performs music that "works its way under the skin, delivering a tickle one moment and an electric jolt the next" (Variety). After studying at the Manhattan School of Music and recent gigs with such artists as Jimmy Heath, Ron Carter, Herbie Hancock, and Wayne Shorter, Ambrose's musical trajectory continues to grow in many directions. He seeks other genres of music to analyze and expose, drawing inspiration from disparate sources, from Chopin to Björk.

For latest ticket availability, please visit the Box Office or contact Instant Charge at (202) 467-4600.

Sat., May 9, 2009 - KC Jazz Club: Roger Kellaway: Tribute to Oscar Peterson

[KC Jazz Club: Roger Kellaway: <i>Tribute to Oscar Peterson</i>.]

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One of the greatest piano players of all time, Oscar Peterson's speed, dexterity, and ability to swing at any tempo were astonishing. In 2007, a few months before Peterson's passing, Roger Kellaway's CD Heroes, a tribute to Oscar Peterson and other influences, won Best Record of the Year from the prestigious French Jazz Academy. JazzTimes calls Kellaway "a rare pianist with the technical command to recreate a portion of Peterson's power, clarity, musicality, and will to swing--all while sounding like himself." As a pianist, Kellaway has performed with many artists, from Elvis to Ellington, Gillespie to Yo-Yo Ma, Joni Mitchell to Henry Mancini. With more than 200 albums to his credit, he's also a composer of protean ability, writing in the jazz, classical, and popular music fields, and scoring for films and television. He's joined by guitarist Bruce Forman and bassist Dan Lutz, who collaborated with Kellaway on Heroes.

For latest ticket availability, please visit the Box Office or contact Instant Charge at (202) 467-4600.

May 14 - 16, 2009 - Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival - 14th annual

[<i>Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival</i> - 14th annual.]

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"The festival's music speaks volumes about the contributions women have made to jazz--and continue to make--both here and abroad."
--The Washington Post
Three Sensational Concerts Hosted by Dee Dee Bridgewater

All the 2007 and 2008 concerts sold out--so for 2009, be sure to reserve your seats in advance for this annual Kennedy Center festival featuring today's top female jazz artists. The Washington Post says the festival "speaks volumes about the contributions women have made to jazz--and continue to make--both here and abroad."

 Timing: Approx. 3 hours; there is a brief pause after each performance, and no intermission
Esperanza Spalding
Bassist, vocalist, and composer Esperanza Spalding has been called "an irresistible performer" (The Seattle Times). Blessed with uncanny instrumental skills, a multilingual voice that is part angel and part siren, and a natural beauty that borders on the hypnotic, the 23-year-old prodigy-turned-pro released her self-titled international debut recording in May 2008. Three years ago she became the second youngest instructor in Berklee School of Music's history after a teenage Pat Metheny.  Timing: 50 minutes
Anat Cohen and the Anzic Orchestra
An established bandleader and prolific composer, idiomatically conversant with modern and traditional jazz, classical music, Brazilian choro, Argentine tango, and an expansive timeline of Afro-Cuban styles, Anat Cohen has established herself as one of the primary voices of her generation on both the tenor saxophone and clarinet since arriving in New York in 1999. "Cohen has emerged as one of the brightest, most original young instrumentalists in jazz…[she] has expanded the vocabulary of jazz with a distinctive accent of her own" (The Washington Post). She's joined by the Anzic Orchestra, an all-star ensemble comprising three woodwinds, three trumpets, two trombones, three cellos, and a guitar-bass-drums-percussion rhythm section.  Timing: 55 minutes
Janis Siegel
Over the past three decades, Janis Siegel has been an undeniable vocal force in The Manhattan Transfer and through her own solo career. She was last seen at the Kennedy Center in October 2006 with songs made famous by the Duke plus selections from her solo CD, A Thousand Beautiful Things. At the 2004 Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival, the Washington Post hailed her for her "extraordinary vocal gifts."  Timing: 55 minutes
 Timing: Approx. 3 hours; with a 20-minute award ceremony; there is no intermission
Hailey Niswanger
Saxophonist Hailey Niswanger won the 2008 Kennedy Center Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Competition. At the young age of 19, she has played in venues across the country and shared the stage with many great jazz artists, including George Duke, George Garzone, Red Holloway, Terell Stafford, Phil Woods, James Moody, Steve Nelson, Taylor Eigsti, Christian McBride, McCoy Tyner, Maceo Parker, and Wynton Marsalis. She is currently studying jazz performance at the Berklee College of Music in Boston on full scholarship.  Timing: 45 minutes, followed by award ceremony
Annette A. Aguilar & StringBeans
String instruments, congas, and frijoles (beans, habichuelas) might seem like a strange mixture of ingredients, but in the hands of percussionist and composer Annette A. Aguilar & StringBeans, her Latin Brazilian jazz band, they become a musical feast. This exquisite ensemble blends Afro-Cuban and Afro-Brazilian rhythms with harp, guitar, violin, piano, and bass creating the unique StringBeans string and percussion sound.  Timing: 45 minutes, followed by a brief pause
Dee Dee Bridgewater
A Grammy winner for her recording Dear Ella, a Tony winner for The Wiz, and a London Olivier Award nominee for Lady Day, Dee Dee Bridgewater is touted by the Village Voice as "the most capable jazz singer of her generation…she is the gold standard by which all divas will now be measured, a total package entertainer."  Timing: 60 minutes
Sherrie Maricle
2009 Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Award Recipient
Drummer Sherrie Maricle coordinates successes as a jazz artist, music director, teacher, and composer. From the drum set, Maricle leads her big band The DIVA Jazz Orchestra and her quintet FIVE PLAY. From Carnegie Hall, she performs with the New York Pops and is also the orchestra's Director of Education. As a music director, Sherrie works with acclaimed Broadway star Maurice Hines. As a teacher, she runs a private drum set and percussion studio and is also a conductor for the New York Summer Festival. At this concert, the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Award will be given to Sherrie Maricle for her lifetime of service to jazz.
 Timing: 3-1/2 hours, including award announcement and one 15-minute intermission
Anne Drummond
Highly acclaimed flutist Anne Drummond has "an arresting style, bending notes without raiding blues clichés, pouring out throbbing phrases behind the beat" (DownBeat). Whether leading her quartet or performing alongside pianist Kenny Barron, vibraphonist Stefon Harris, or bassist Avishai Cohen, Drummond is an original whose voice is lyrical and powerful, subtle yet driving.  
Timing: 45 minutes, followed by 20-minute award announcement
Carmen Lundy
Kennedy Center favorite Carmen Lundy is a woman of many faces: composer, arranger, producer, actress, painter, and sophisticated vocalist well known for her progressive bop and post-bop stylings--"in a world of pretenders, she's a genuine jazz singer" (Los Angeles Times). Equally adept at love-struck ballads, songs of heartbreak, or full-out swing, Lundy wields a voice of "agility and seductive allure [that] make for a potent combination."  Timing: 50 minutes, followed by intermission
Maria Schneider Orchestra
Last heard at the Center in 1997, the Maria Schneider Orchestra is "twenty-one musicians of tremendous technical sophistication and emotional energy [who] channel their talents through the direction of the most significant big-band jazz composer of our time" (The Christian Science Monitor). Maria Schneider's music has been described as evocative, majestic, magical, heart-stoppingly gorgeous, and beyond categorization.  Timing: 80 minutes

Mimi Jones Band
Mimi Jones, a.k.a. bassist and Kennedy Center favorite Miriam Sullivan, brings a top-drawer group with her as she returns to the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival following her star turn in the 2004 event. Jones's performance features original works from a soon-to-be-released CD, The New Day (New Tone Music).
Millennium Stage
Performance at 6 p.m.
Fifth Annual Women in Jazz Competition
A Performance Plus™ event

In honor of Mary Lou Williams, the Kennedy Center presents this exciting two-part pianist competition, in which five finalists get to display their talents in front of Millennium Stage audiences and a jury of renowned international musicians. The winner will be announced on Saturday evening during the festival's 7 p.m. performance in the Terrace Theater. The winner will enjoy the opportunity to perform as part of the 15th annual festival in 2010.
Millennium Stage
Performances from 12:30–2 p.m. & 6–7 p.m.

Moving With the Spirit: The Sacred Jazz of Mary Lou Williams
A Performance Plus™ event
Mary Lou Williams strived to be a force for emotional healing through her music. In the 1960s, always one step ahead of innovations in jazz, Williams began focusing on music composition for the Catholic Church. The resulting music inspired others like Duke Ellington to create their own sacred jazz. Mary Lou Williams biographer Dr. Tammy Kernodle and award-winning pianist and composer Deanna Witkowski present a program of performance and discussion devoted to the sacred jazz works of Mary Lou Williams.
Millennium Stage
Performance at 6 p.m.

Mon., Jun. 15, 2009, 7:30 PM - Celebrating a Jazz Master: Ellis Marsalis

[<i>Celebrating a Jazz Master: Ellis Marsalis</i>.]

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In partnership with the Kennedy Center, the Fifth Annual Duke Ellington Jazz Festival's closing night concert, Celebrating a Jazz Master: Ellis Marsalis, is a rousing tribute to the master jazz pianist, composer, educator, and patriarch of one of New Orleans' most famed musical families. An extremely rare opportunity to see the Marsalis brothers perform with their father, the June 15 concert in the Concert Hall is sure to sell out and features Branford, Wynton, Delfeayo, and Jason Marsalis, with special guests Harry Connick Jr. and Dr. Billy Taylor.