Salute to Duke: Celebrating Ellington’s 110th Birthday

This promises to be a real nice event!! I’d love to see you there. I’ll be channelling Johnny Hodges (with a little Eric Dolphy thrown in for good measure).

Salute to Duke:  Celebrating Ellington’s 110th Birthday

Highland Jazz

Saturday, April 25, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Newton South High School

140 Brandeis Road, Newton Centre, MA

Tickets:  $18 in advance ($20 at the door).  $17 seniors. $10 students

781-237-1917 or www.highlandjazz.org



Hailed by JazzTimes for its “lush sonorities and a saxophonic blend worthy of Duke’s finest reed sections,” The Aardvark Jazz Orchestra will celebrate the 110th anniversary of Duke Ellington’s birth (April 29,1899) with classics and rarities by the Maestro, along with Ellington-inspired works by Aardvark music director Mark Harvey. The program will include favorites such as Solitude, Don’t Get Around Much Anymore, Caravan and Come Sunday as well as original transcriptions of The Mooche (an Ellington piece from the 1920s) and Daydream (by Billy Strayhorn, Ellington’s long-time artistic partner and alter-ego).  Ducal rarities will include Almost Cried and Pie Eye’s Blues from Ellington’s film score for Otto Preminger’s Anatomy of a Murder.  The band will give the premiere of Mark Harvey’s piece 110 Blues, written in honor of the 110th birthday, and will perform Harvey’s 2004 composition No Walls, inspired by Doctors Without Borders and Ellington’s philosophy of moving beyond categories.



Now in its 36th season, The Aardvark Jazz Orchestra is a large jazz ensemble known for its exhilarating concerts spanning the jazz and American music spectrum, from the music of Ellington and other jazz greats to original works by founder/music director Mark Harvey. Winner of the 2000 Independent Music Awards, the band has premiered more than 100 works for jazz orchestra and has released 10 CDs to international critical acclaim. Aardvark has made a specialty of the music of Duke Ellington, and has performed his wide-ranging catalogue in concert halls, jazz clubs, festivals, colleges and universities for more than three decades.   The band’s CD Duke Ellington Sacred Music has been called “remarkably impressive…Aardvark and Ellington are an ideal couple” (allaboutjazz.com). 


Composer-trumpeter Mark Harvey is Aardvark’s founder, music director and principal arranger.  He has performed in the U.S., Mexico and Europe and has collaborated with such notables as George Russell, Gil Evans, Claudio Roditi, and Howard McGhee. He has received awards/fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, ASCAP, and the Whiting Foundation, and has received commissions from the 15th Annual John Coltrane Memorial Concert, MIT Festival Jazz Ensemble, and Meet the Composer-Lila Wallace/Readers’ Digest Commissioning Program, among others.  Harvey is an Ellington scholar and has written and lectured widely on the maestro’s life and works.



Exclusive management by Americas Musicworks, Rebecca DeLamotte, managing director

Tel:  617 776 8778.  Email:  delamotte-amw@comcast.net

www.americasmusicworks.com     www.aardvarkjazz.com



Aardvark’s April 25 concert is one of the kickoff events of Boston’s Jazz Week, a nine-day celebration of jazz from April 25 to May 3, with hundreds of events in venues throughout the Greater Boston area. 


In another Jazz Week event, Aardvark director Mark Harvey will play a solo trumpet rendition of the National Anthem at Fenway Park before the Red Sox/Yankees game on Sunday, April 26.


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April 2009

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All Photographic Images ©Arni Cheatham, Segami Images and Eyes and Ears, 2009. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of photographs without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

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