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Jazz at Lincoln Center Returns with New Season of Live Concerts in Frederick P. Rose Hall

Christian Wissmuller • News • August 24, 2021

Jazz at Lincoln Center and Managing and Artistic Director Wynton Marsalis proudly announce the organization’s 2021–22 season of live, in-person performances in Rose Theater, The Appel Room, and Dizzy’s Club— all at Frederick P. Rose Hall, the home of Jazz at Lincoln Center, located at Broadway at 60th Street in New York, New York.

Following more than 17 months producing over 1,000 digital programs for a global audience throughout the pandemic, Jazz at Lincoln Center opens the doors of the House of Swing on November 18 at full capacity. Jazz at Lincoln Center observes all New York City and New York State guidelines in order for audiences to safely experience live events.

Jazz at Lincoln Center’s 34th season runs from November 18, 2021 to June 11, 2022. In addition to live concerts throughout Frederick P. Rose Hall, the organization offers webcast performances, in-person and virtual education programs, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis tour dates worldwide, and the release of new Blue Engine Recordstitles.

Concerts during this monumental season re-affirm the art of swing, the engine of musical freedom in jazz. Season concerts honor some of the luminaries of jazz composition rooted in swing—Thelonious Monk, Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus, Dave Brubeck, Wayne Shorter, and Jelly Roll Morton—while debuting new works by Cécile McLorin Salvant and Wynton Marsalis.

In this new season, Jazz at Lincoln Center continues to produce an extensive range of educational and advocacy programs hosted in-person and online for all ages. New programs including A Closer Listen have been added to the organization’s schedule of education initiatives which include Swing University, Webop, Essentially Ellington, and High School and Middle School Jazz Academies.

The organization’s signature education program, the Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition & Festival (EE), will take place in-person in May 2022. The program observes its 27th year of spreading the message of Duke Ellington’s music, leadership, and collective orientation by providing high school ensembles with free transcriptions of original Duke Ellington recordings—accompanied by rehearsal guides, teaching notes, original recordings, professional instruction, and more—to more than 7,000 schools and independent bands in 55 countries. In addition to the Competition and Festival held each year, EE co-produces 17 non-competitive regional festivals across the U.S.

Under Music Director Wynton Marsalis, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra tours its vast repertoire—from rare historic compositions and modern jazz arrangements to Jazz at Lincoln Center‐commissioned works— extensively throughout the 2021-22 season. In the fall of 2021, the orchestra tours Europe with residencies in select cities followed by the return of the Big Band Holidays tour to select U.S. cities during the holiday season. In January and February of 2022, the world-renowned orchestra embarks on its longest tour in over 20 years performing across the U.S. West Coast and Midwest.

Throughout the 2021–22 season, Blue Engine Records—Jazz at Lincoln Center’s in-house record label — will continue to release both new and archival materials on streaming and physical formats. These will include Wynton Marsalis’s take on Louis Armstrong’s famed Hot Fives and Sevens sides as well as music from the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and emerging jazz stars. Additionally, Blue Engine will re-release older, currently unavailable titles from Marsalis.

 

The 2021-22 season upholds the notion that jazz is a metaphor for democracy. Because jazz is improvisational, it celebrates personal freedom and encourages individual expression. Because jazz is swinging, it dedicates that freedom to finding and maintaining common ground with others. Because jazz is rooted in the blues, it inspires us to face adversity with persistent optimism.

 

Jazz at Lincoln Center’s homecoming season of live, in-person concerts at Frederick P. Rose Hall is anchored by the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis (JLCO) and opens in Rose Theater with Wynton at 60 (November 18–19, 2021). The concert event—a celebration of Managing and Artistic Director Wynton Marsalis’s 60th birthday—highlights his works in small and big band configurations. Grand Seiko is the title sponsor of Wynton at 60 and official timekeeper of Jazz at Lincoln Center’s 2021—22 season.

During the 2021 holiday season, the JLCO marks the return of the Grammy Award-winning holiday extravaganza Big Band Holidays (December 15-19, 2021) in Rose Theater. With soulful big band arrangements of songs both sacred and secular, Big Band Holidays has been an uplifting tradition enjoyed by audiences of all ages and backgrounds. This year the orchestra, under Marcus Printup as Music Director, welcomes rising star vocalist Ashley Pezzotti to join the tradition. Jazz at Lincoln Center also brings back a Relaxed Performanceduring the holiday run. The Relaxed Performance is designed to provide families with children or adults with autism, learning difficulties, or other sensory and communication needs the opportunity to enjoy Jazz at Lincoln Center performances in a more comfortable environment.

Jazz at Lincoln Center starts the new year with Celebrating Chick Corea (January 14-15, 2022), a musical celebration honoring one of the most beloved and decorated jazz artists in history. Longtime Corea collaborator and band member John Patitucci serves as the Music Director as a host of artists from Corea’s various bands and projects over the breadth of his career delve into the pianist’s acoustic and electric music.

 

In February, Jazz at Lincoln Center’s perennial favorite Valentine’s tradition returns as vocalist Dianne Reeves (February 11-12, 2022), 2018 NEA Jazz Master and five-time GRAMMY Award winner, fills Rose Theater with songs of love and romance.

In February and March, the blues is the focus as the organization presents Voices of Mississippi in The Appel Room, and What Is the Blues?, a family concert in Rose Theater. Voices of Mississippi (February 25-26, 2022) will be a multimedia event based on and inspired by William Ferris’s 2019 double-Grammy Award-winning, four-disc box set Voices of Mississippi: Artists and Musicians Documented by William Ferris. Several of the 21st century’s foremost blues practitioners including 87-year-old blues legend and GRAMMY award-winning Bobby Rush, Ruthie Foster, Cedric Burnside, Shardé Thomas and Luther and Cody Dickinson of the North Mississippi All Stars imbue The Appel Room with the spirit of the blues. Hosted by William Ferris, this special multi-media celebration of the blues, gospel, and local folklore is augmented by narration from Ferris with selected film segments, archival audio recordings, and photographs from Ferris’ collection.

 

Jazz for Young People Family Concert: What is the Blues? (March 26, 2022) is an hour-long, interactive concert for families to learn all about the fundamental musical concept known as “the blues.” With support from a soulful live band, this afternoon performance is hosted by the charismatic Catherine Russell, named “the best blues singer today” by the Wall Street Journal.

Programming in the spring highlights and re-affirms the art of swing. In a rare appearance in the iconic Appel Room, the JLCO performs a new concert, Journey Through Jazz: Fundamentals (March 18-19, 2022), to demonstrate the fundamentals of jazz through performance. Each concert is curated to help listeners hone their ears, from basic to more complex concepts. The concerts feature compositions and arrangements by the JLCO and includes works by swing masters Duke Ellington, Dave Brubeck, Leonard Bernstein, Wayne Shorter, and Jelly Roll Morton. Journey Through Jazz: Fundamentals is made possible by a generous gift from Lynne and Richard Pasculano.

The works of Charles Mingus—the virtuoso bass player, accomplished pianist, bandleader and composer— are the focus of Charles Mingus Centennial Celebration (April 22–23, 2022). Music directed by Vincent Gardner, the JLCO honors one of the greatest jazz musicians and composers in history and presents new arrangements of Mingus’s repertoire. The musical event highlights some of Mingus’s seminal compositions and works in the big band format.

Bronx-born bassist and full-fledged Latin jazz master Carlos Henriquez leads the world premiere of the program JLCO with Wynton Marsalis: Monk Con Clave, (May 10-12, 2022) in Rose Theater. This concert celebrates Monk’s music through the lens of clave and swing rhythms.

The spectacularly multi-talented Camille Thurman applies her saxophone and vocal skills in Burt Bacharach Reimagined (June 3-4, 2022). To interpret classic songs by the iconic singer-songwriter, she presents a program of Bacharach’s rich yet subtly complex songs alongside her regular working group, the Darrell Green Trio, in The Appel Room.

In 2020, Cécile McLorin Salvant was one of 20 individuals to receive an honor, colloquially known as the “Genius Grant” from the MacArthur Foundation. The vocalist—an eclectic curator and one of the leading jazz artists of her generation—will return to Rose Theater (May 13-14, 2022) to premiere a new collection of music showcasing her unique voice.

 

Concluding the Jazz at Lincoln Center’s milestone season, Managing and Artistic Director Wynton Marsalis will direct the JLCO in All About Ellington (June 10-11, 2022). Serving as a punctuation to the concert season designed to re-affirm the art of swing, the evening will be dedicated to the inspirational genius of Duke Ellington as the JLCO represents the seminal works in each decade of Duke’s career.

 

The complete 2021-22 season chronology is available online:
https://jazzatlincolncenter.squarespace.com/21-22-season.

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