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  • Jingle Bells and jazz

    Posted on November 27th, 2015 in Profiles & Interviews | 1

    Wynton Marsalis, one of the most important American musicians of the past 50 years, is on the phone from his home in New York City. We’re talking about “Jingle Bells.” The conversation started rather awkwardly, on my part, anyway. I mean, this is a guy who has dedicated much of the past four decades ensuring that jazz is recognized as a true American art form, perhaps the American art form … and I’m asking him if he and his extraordinary Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra play “Jingle Bells.”   Keep reading »

  • A Love Supreme: JLCO plays Coltrane at Boston Symphony Hall

    Posted on November 24th, 2015 in Review | 1

    The power, variety and virtuosity of big-band jazz were on show Sunday evening at Symphony Hall. In a presentation of the Celebrity Series of Boston, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis performed a two-hour concert of music composed or reinvented by saxophonist John Coltrane.   Keep reading »

  • Orchestra Pays Tribute to John Coltrane at Symphony Hall

    Posted on November 23rd, 2015 in

    John Coltrane’s seminal album-long suite A Love Supreme is one of the saxophone virtuoso’s most fitting work for tribute, but also perhaps his most difficult to interpret. The jazz classic, which celebrated its 50th anniversary earlier this year, is defined by its intense, passionate and, at times, chaotic improvisation.   Keep reading »

  • Wynton Marsalis honored at Marian Anderson Awards at the Kimmel Center

    Posted on November 11th, 2015 in Review

    The Kimmel Center was aglow for the Marian Anderson awards on Tuesday evening with stars including honoree Wynton Marsalis, TV journalist Soledad O’Brien as master of ceremonies, gospel singer Kim Burrell, and Grammy-winning vocalist Lalah Hathaway. Attendees donned regal dresses and dapper suits to honor historic contralto Anderson and jazz legend Marsalis.   Keep reading »

  • Wynton Marsalis’ Acceptance Speech at Marian Anderson Award 2015

    Posted on November 10th, 2015 in Speech

    I would like to thank the Board of Directors and Chair Nina Tinari for selecting me as recipient of this year’s Marian Anderson Award. Thank you Mayor Nutter. And thanks to young Max Chambers who was accompanied by the great Farid Baron, to Miss Misty Copeland, to Lalah Hathaway, to Kim Burrell, to Bill Jolly and his band, and to my brothers for life, the seven.   Keep reading »

  • Marsalis Concerto in D, Barbican, London — ‘Vivid, restless’

    Posted on November 9th, 2015 in Review

    Contrary to some preconceptions, classical music has always opened its arms to outside influences. In the US, jazz and classical have enjoyed a particularly fruitful courtship. If there ever were boundaries that mattered, they disappeared long ago. Gershwin, Copland and Bernstein have all been there, so Wynton Marsalis is in good company.   Keep reading »

  • LSO/Gaffigan review – Nicola Benedetti does her best with unrestrained Marsalis

    Posted on November 8th, 2015 in Review

    Wynton Marsalis is a very busy musician. On the night Nicola Benedetti was premiering his violin concerto in London, Marsalis was in Princeton, on tour with his Jazz at Lincoln Centre Orchestra. So one could understand if he feared he might not get the time to write another violin concerto. Perhaps that’s why he seemed to be throwing everything he had at this one.   Keep reading »

  • Bold venture is more glorified jam session than fully-achieved work

    Posted on November 7th, 2015 in Review

    Wynton Marsalis has made several forays across the jazz-classical divide, but his Concerto in D, which was written for – and, more importantly, with - the violinist Nicola Benedetti, marks a bold new departure.   Keep reading »

  • Benedetti, LSO, Gaffigan, Barbican

    Posted on November 7th, 2015 in Review

    A full house for a premiere performance: Wynton Marsalis bucks the trend in contemporary music. He’s an established name, more for his jazz than his classical work. But in recent years he has produced a substantial body of orchestral music, so the flocking crowds know what to expect. His new Violin Concerto continues the trend.   Keep reading »

  • Nicola Benedetti gives premiere of Wynton Marsalis’s Violin Concerto

    Posted on November 7th, 2015 in Review

    Curiously – for an orchestra that promoted a 12-concert Violin Festival at the end of last season, but which included no new works for the instrument – the LSO followed its recent UK premiere of John Adams’s Scheherazade.2 with another American composer’s violin piece written for a female soloist (Leila Josefowicz), this time by Wynton Marsalis for Nicola Benedetti. Both are substantial, lengthy and impressive works in four movements.   Keep reading »