2018-19 Jazz Series
Regina Carter Quartet
Friday, November 2, 2018, 7:30 p.m.
“A talented, charismatic player who is almost single-handedly reviving interest in the violin as a jazz instrument.” —The Los Angeles Times
Sony Masterworks recording artist Regina Carter is the foremost jazz violinist of her generation. Her quest for beauty combined with her passion for excellence did not escape the attention of the MacArthur Foundation, who awarded Regina their prestigious fellowship “genius grant.” Regina’s recent release, Ella: Accentuate the Positive, and touring program, Simply Ella, mark the 100th birthday of a musical legend. The program celebrates the incomparable Ella Fitzgerald—THE source of Regina’s musical inspiration. An influence she has cherished throughout her life, Regina describes her visceral connection to Ella’s music:
“Growing up in Detroit, there was always music playing in our home. While there was a variety of music I enjoyed, there were a few recordings and artists I found consistently captivating. Ella Fitzgerald was one of these exceptions. To this very day, whenever I hear an Ella recording it grabs me at my core. I’m entranced by her voice, her melodic improvisations and the passion and artfulness with which Ella sings a song. She helps me understand a song by providing a window to its essence. In a word, Ella is sublime, and she is at the top of my go-to list when learning a jazz tune. Perhaps Jimmy Rowles said it best, ‘Music comes out of her. When [Ella] walks down the street…she leaves notes.’ I’m so excited to celebrate Ella Fitzgerald, an artist who has meant so much to all the notes in my musical life.”
Vanguard Jazz Orchestra
Saturday, November 3, 2018, 7:30 p.m.
“One of New York’s institutions ...its strengths are its colors and its soloists.”
—The New York Times
The multiple-Grammy-winning 16 piece Vanguard Jazz Orchestra features some of world’s finest musicians, most of whom lead their own bands when not performing with the orchestra. Co-founded by legendary trumpeter Thad Jones and drummer Mel Lewis, the ensemble still plays virtually every Monday night at the renowned Village Vanguard Jazz club, New York City’s most famous basement, where it got its start in 1966. The beautiful melodies and unique arrangements of Thad Jones enchanted audiences worldwide. The mixture of the music from diverse backgrounds created their innovative sound and the band was quickly recognized as a world-class big band. The ensemble cultivated its rich history while commissioning new music that made them the prototype of innovative big band music. 2016 marked 50 years of continued performances of Monday Night Live at the
Nicole Mitchell Quartet
Saturday, February 2, 2019, 8 p.m.
“Few flutists can summon the variety of tones, textures, emotional realms and degrees of light from the instrument that Mitchell can.” —JazzTimes
Nicole Mitchell is an award-winning creative flutist, composer, bandleader, educator and transdisciplinary conceptualist. Mitchell believes in the transformational power of music, and she seeks to build alternative worlds that bridge the familiar with the unknown. Her mission as a flutist has been to raise respect for the instrument by developing a new improvisational language that incorporates her voice with the flute. The founder of Black Earth Ensemble, Mitchell composes for contemporary ensembles of varied instrumentation and size while incorporating improvisation and a wide aesthetic expression. She is a professor of music at University of California-Irvine..
Anat Cohen Quartet
Friday, May 10, 2019, 8 p.m.
A present day multicultural wonder… An enthralling clarinetist and a persuasive saxophonist, [Anat Cohen] displays a pan-historical, pan-cultural approach to jazz.
—The New Yorker
Clarinetist and saxophonist Anat Cohen has taken the jazz world by storm, winning hearts and minds the world over with her expressive virtuosity and delightful stage presence. As JazzTimes says, “With the clarinet she becomes a singer, a dancer, a poet, a mad scientist, laughing—musically—with the sheer delight of reaching that new place, that new feeling, with each chorus.” An established bandleader and prolific composer, the Anat Cohen Quartet program is a unique blend of modern and traditional jazz, classical music, Brazilian choro, Argentine tango, and an expansive timeline of Afro-Cuban styles. The perennial winner of “Clarinetist of the Year” titles from DownBeat, JazzTimes, and the Jazz Journalists Association, Fresh Air’s Terry Gross credits Cohen with “bringing the clarinet to the world” and The New York Times hails her a “Master.”