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2015-16 Swingin' With The CJO Season Starts Thursday

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by Andrew Patton on October 19, 2015

Another star-studded Swingin’ with the CJO Season gets off to a hot start this weekend with local luminaries and a world premiere. “Redefining Tradition: Ellington, Basie & Beyond,” featuring violinist Christian Howes, pianist Dave Powers, and saxophonist Shawn “Thunder” Wallace, will kick off the weekend with a show on Thursday, October 22nd at 7:30pm, followed by performances on Friday and Saturday at 8pm and a matinee performance on Sunday at 3pm, all held at the Southern Theatre. While many jazz greats will be honored by the program, the finale for each show will be an extra special premiere presentation of “CT Suite – Three Portraits in Blues,” a newly commissioned work honoring jazz great Clark Terry, the master of trumpet and flugelhorn who unfortunately passed away on February 21, 2015. The piece was composed by three of modern jazz’s top composer/arrangers: John Clayton, (CJO saxophonist) Chad Eby and Dennis Mackrel. Tickets are available here, but for those unable to attend, Saturday’s concert will be available online via a live simulcast courtesy of WOSU at wosu.org, and will be available to stream on the site for six months following the show. Keep reading for more details on the program and the entire season from Jazz Arts Group:

COLUMBUS, OH — Jazz Arts Group of Columbus (JAG) presents the Columbus Jazz Orchestra (CJO) in a program titled “Redefining Tradition: Ellington, Basie & Beyond,” Thursday, October 22 – Sunday, October 25 at The Southern Theatre (21 East Main Street).  “Redefining Tradition: Ellington, Basie & Beyond” is the first of the CJO’s 2015-2016 Swingin’ with the CJO series at the Southern Theatre and features a trio of powerhouse guest soloists – jazz violinist Christian Howes, Emmy Award®-winning pianist Dave Powers and saxophonist Shawn “Thunder” Wallace.  Tickets start at just $25 and are available at the CAPA Ticket Office (39 East State Street), all Ticketmaster Outlets including Kroger Stores, by phone at (614) 469-0939, (800) 745-3000, or online at www.ticketmaster.com.  The Jazz Arts Group’s Swingin’ with the CJO Series is sponsored by The Westin Columbus.  The Artistic Director Chair sponsor is Ann & Tom Hoaglin.

Each of the four performances of “Redefining Tradition…” culminates with “CT Suite – Three Portraits in Blues,” a newly commissioned, world premiere work celebrating the life and legacy of jazz great Clark Terry.  A frequent collaborator with the Columbus Jazz Orchestra and an internationally recognized performer and music educator, Clark Terry earned his estimable reputation as a jazz master while playing trumpet and flugelhorn in the big bands of both Count Basie and Duke Ellington before forming his own internationally renowned ensembles.  WOSU Public Media and JAG are collaborating to make this world premiere composition, along with the entirety of the concert, available worldwide through a live simulcast Saturday night, October 24.  The event will then be available for another six months for on-demand viewing on WOSU Public Media’s website, www.wosu.org.

“When Clark Terry passed away on February 21, 2015 our hearts were broken and we resolved to share his gregarious effervescent musical spirit with the world through this extraordinary commission, and partnership with WOSU Public Media,” said CJO Artistic Director, Byron Stripling.  “Clark Terry had magical, supernatural powers on the trumpet.  His was a slashing, burning technique akin to that of Jascha Heifitz, yet it was imbued with the bluesy moan of a John Lee Hooker,” continued Stripling, who experienced the elder musician’s magic first hand as one of a group of very talented young musicians selected by Mr. Terry to play in his big band.  “Like Muhammad Ali at his peak, his range, flexibility and precision were second to none.”

About the Live Simulcast on WOSU Public Media:

Live streaming is a service provided by WOSU Productions, WOSU Public Media’s creative services agency for radio and television production.  Viewers will go to wosu.org and click on a graphic on the homepage of the website to access the free, live streaming event.  The live simulcast will give online users the same experience as if they were at the concert, with the convenience of watching at home or on their mobile device.  An archive of “CT Suite – Three Portraits in Blues” will be available for six months after the concert through a dedicated link on wosu.org and jazzartsgroup.org.

WOSU Public Media is a community-supported, noncommercial network of public radio and television stations, and digital services.

About “CT Suite – Three Portraits in Blues”:

“CT Suite – Three Portraits in Blues” has been composed by a triumvirate of highly respected composer/arrangers:  John Clayton, Chad Eby and Dennis Mackrel.  Collectively they have performed, arranged and composed for a roster of music’s biggest names and most prestigious organizations including Monty Alexander, the American Jazz Orchestra, the Amsterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Charles Aznavour, Tony Bennett, the Carla Bley Big Band, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Regina Carter, Bill Charlap, the Count Basie Orchestra, Whitney Houston, Jazz Orchestra of the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Quincy Jones, Norah Jones, Gladys Knight, Diana Krall, Queen Latifah, Yo-Yo Ma, Branford Marsalis, Wynton Marsalis, Sir Paul McCartney, the McCoy Tyner Big Band, Willie Nelson, Sir George Shearing, the United States Military Academy at West Point’s Jazz Knights Big Band, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra and the Columbus Jazz Orchestra, among many others.

About Our Soloists:

Christian Howes has been called “the finest, fieriest jazz violinist since Billy Bang.”  He is a performer, respected educator and composer who was voted #1 in the Downbeat Critics Poll, named among the top three jazz violinists in the Jazz Times critics poll, and nominated for Violinist of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association.  Through his work as an educator, Howes twice toured the Ukraine and Montenegro under the auspices of the U.S. State Department, received the Residency Partner Award through Chamber Music America, and earned a USArtist grant through Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation.  “Southern Exposure,” his most recent recording featuring the great French jazz accordionist Richard Galliano, received considerable praise in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Downbeat Magazine and Jazz Times.

Two-time Emmy Award®-winning composer, pianist, vocalist and educator, Dave Powers has for 35 years been a vital part of the Columbus jazz scene.  He is an adjunct faculty member of The Ohio State University School of Music and is a consultant and frequent guest of the public television show, “The Piano Guy.”  As such, he has taught a series of master classes with “Piano Guy” host Scott Houston.  Powers owns a vast repertoire that has held him in fine stead while performing locally, nationally and internationally; in concerts, clubs, restaurants, corporate events and private parties; and with such esteemed performers as George Benson, Rusty Bryant, Buddy DeFranco, Joan Rivers, Auturo Sandoval, Grover Washington, Jr. and others.  Dave has had a long association with the Jazz Arts Group performing with the Columbus Jazz Orchestra and has, for the past six years, hosted a jazz concert series at the Clintonville Woman’s Club called “The House Jazz Concert Series.”

Shawn “Thunder” Wallace is a performer, recording artist, composer, clinician and educator who holds a Master’s Degree in Music and who is an Associate Professor of Music: Jazz Studies at The Ohio State University.  Wallace is skilled in classical music and is equally comfortable with traditional and contemporary jazz, and Christian music.  He has been seen and heard nationally on CBS, BET, NBC and NPR.  In addition to receiving recognition in Billboard Magazine, Contemporary Christian Music Magazine, and newspapers throughout the country, he is a winner of the Downbeat Magazine Outstanding Soloist Award.

*           *           *           *           *

The Columbus Jazz Orchestra takes over the stage of the historic Southern Theatre (21 East Main Street) October 22 – 25 with Redefining Tradition: Ellington, Basie and Beyond, the season’s first Swingin’ with the CJO Series event.  Directed by world-renowned band leader and trumpet virtuoso Byron Stripling, the concert features jazz violinist Christian Howes, Emmy Award®-winning keyboardist Dave Powers and saxophonist Shawn “Thunder” Wallace, and includes the world premiere of “CT Suite – Three Portraits in Blues,” written in tribute to one of America’s greatest jazz icons and frequent CJO guest star, Clark Terry.

 

Swingin’ with the CJO Series Schedule: (All at the Southern Theatre, 21 E. Main Street)

 

Redefining Tradition: Ellington, Basie and Beyond featuring Christian Howes, Dave Powers and Shawn Wallace

Thursday, October 22, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, October 23, 8 p.m. (plus post-show Jam Session)

Saturday, October 24, 8 p.m. (Live Simulcast via WOSU Public Media)

Sunday, October 25, 3 p.m.

 

Home for the Holidays featuring Bruce Wermuth and Kelly Crum Delaveris

Wednesday, December 2, 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, December 3, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, December 4, 8 p.m. (plus post-show Jam Session)

Saturday, December 5, 8 p.m.

Sunday, December 6, 3 p.m.

 

Sammy, Dean & A Little Bit of Frank featuring Ted Levy and John Fredo

Wednesday, February 3, 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, February 4, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, February 5, 8 p.m. (plus post-show Jam Session)

Saturday, February 6, 8 p.m.

Sunday, February 7, 3 p.m.

 

Standards & Strings featuring Carmen Bradford

Thursday, March 17, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 18, 8 p.m. (plus post-show Jam Session)

Saturday, March 19, 8 p.m.

Sunday, March 20, 3 p.m.

 

The Music of Sting & Steely Dan featuring Michael McElroy and Phil Clark

Thursday, April 7, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, April 8, 8 p.m. (plus post-show Jam Session)

Saturday, April 9, 8 p.m.

Sunday, April 10, 3 p.m.

 

Offstage at the Jazz Academy Offers Behind-the-Scenes Insights:

Audience members to JAG’s Swingin’ with the CJO and Inside Track concerts are invited to join the season’s guest artists for “Offstage at the Jazz Academy,” casual and engaging conversations that take place at the Jazz Arts Group’s Jazz Academy (769 East Long Street, 4th Floor).  Learn about the artists’ background, influences, life on the road, and even what they’re listening to on their iPod.  Offstage at the Jazz Academy IS FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.

 

Saturday, January 30, 2 p.m. – Grace Kelly Band

Saturday, February 6, 2 p.m. – John Fredo and Ted Louis Levy

Saturday, March 5, 2 p.m. – Jeff Hamilton Trio

Saturday, March 19, 2 p.m. – Carmen Bradford

Saturday, April 9, 2 p.m. – Michael McElroy and Phil Clark

Saturday, April 23, 2 p.m. – Aaron Diehl Trio

Season subscriptions for Swingin’ with the CJO are available through the CAPA ticket office at 39 East State Street or by calling 614-469-0939. Single tickets for all performances of the Swingin’ with the CJO are available starting Monday, August 10 at the CAPA ticket office, all Ticketmaster Outlets (including Kroger Stores), through www.jazzartsgroup.org and www.ticketmaster.com. Swingin’ with the CJO single tickets are priced at $54 (main floor), $48 (first balcony) and $25 (second balcony).  Student and group rates are also available.

Jazz Arts Group’s 2015-16 season is made possible by ongoing support from the Greater Columbus Arts Council, The Westin Columbus, The Columbus Foundation, L Brands, the Ohio Arts Council, Grange Insurance, Ann & Tom Hoaglin, US Bank, State Auto Insurance Companies, Plante Moran, Sequent, Bob Evans Farms, Cardinal Health, Fahn & Denny Tishkoff, and the Reinberger Foundation.  Swingin’ with the CJO is sponsored by The Westin Columbus. The Artistic Director Chair Sponsor is Ann & Tom Hoaglin.  JAG’s Inside Track Series is sponsored by Sequent.  Additional support for Inside Track performances and workshops taking place at the Lincoln Theatre is provided by State Auto Insurance Companies.  Jazz Arts Group receives media support from The Columbus Dispatch, WOSU Public Media, WMNI AM 920 and WCBE 90.5 FM.

About the Jazz Arts Group:

The Jazz Arts Group of Columbus (JAG) is America’s oldest not-for-profit arts organization dedicated to producing, performing and promoting jazz. JAG is the third largest performing arts organization in Columbus and consists of four focus areas: the Columbus Jazz Orchestra (CJO), one of the world’s finest professional jazz orchestras; the Jazz Academy, JAG’s extensive instructional programs educating both students and adults about jazz and American music; Inside Track, a jazz and blues performance series produced at the historic Lincoln Theatre and beyond; and Affiliate Musicians, a program providing employment opportunities for professional musicians.

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