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Columbus Jazz Orchestra's "Broadway" featuring Bill Charlap & Bethany Moore

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by Mark Subel on January 18, 2011

The Jazz Arts Group’s 2010-2011 Swingin’ at the Southern series continues February 16-20 with Broadway: From Oklahoma! to West Side Story under the direction of Artistic Director Byron Stripling at the historic Southern Theatre. The classic hits of Broadway come to life through the magic of the Columbus Jazz Orchestra in a spectacular evening of music from the Great White Way featuring pianist Bill Charlap and vocalist Bethany Moore. Whether you’re a Shark or a Jet, you’ll be sure to enjoy the CJO’s renditions of Broadway’s classic show tunes.

Bill Charlap was born in New York City into a musical family. His father, Moose Charlap, was a Broadway composer and songwriter whose credits included the scores to Peter Pan, The Conquering Hero, Whoop-up, Alice Through the Looking Glass and Kelly. His mother, Sandy Stewart, is a popular song singer who performed with Benny Goodman, co-starred on TV’s Perry Como Show and scored a Grammy nomination for her hit single, “My Coloring Book” by the songwriting team of Kander and Ebb.

Mr. Charlap began playing the piano at a very young age. He studied with jazz pianist Jack Reilly and classical pianist Eleanor Hancock and informally picked up pointers from jazz/popular song pianist Dick Hyman, who was a distant cousin on his father’s side. Charlap was fully thrust into the jazz world in the late ’80s when he joined baritone saxophonist Gerry Mulligan’s quintet and in 1994 was enlisted by alto saxophonist Phil Woods for his band. Charlap was the musical director of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, A Celebration of Johnny Mercer as a part of the JVC Jazz Festival in New York and later took the revue on the road. He started his solo recording career in 1994 and has released several albums since. His two most recent releases for Blue Note Records are Bill Charlap Plays George Gershwin – The American Soul and a CD of ballads in duo with his mother Sandy Stewart titled Love Is Here To Stay.

Mr. Charlap received the pianist of the year Jazz Award in 2003 from the Jazz Journalists Association and was named outstanding jazz soloist by Manhattan’s Night Life Awards in 2003 and 2004. In 2004, he and his mother received the top jazz duo Bistro Award for their engagement at the Algonquin in New York. In July 2005, Charlap succeeded Dick Hyman as Artistic Director of Jazz In July at the 92nd Street Y’s Tisch Center for the Arts.

Single tickets are available through the CAPA Ticket Office for $49 (main floor), $46 (first balcony) and $41 (second balcony). Tickets are available by phone at 614-469-0939 and through all Ticketmaster outlets. For more information call 614-294-5200 or visit www.jazzartsgroup.org.

Under the direction of Todd Stoll, the Columbus Youth Jazz Orchestra (CYJO) is pleased to perform prior to each Swingin’ at the Southern Sunday matinee concert. Comprised of premier players in grades 9-12 from central Ohio and beyond, the CYJO provides opportunities for talented high school age musicians to further their experience in America’s classical music – jazz. Admission to the CYJO performance at 1 PM is included with each 2 PM Sunday matinee ticket purchase.

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