Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival: Harlem Stage Presents Celebrating Cecil, May 8 & 9
(Published: April 19, 2012)
2012 Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival Presents
Tribute to Club Harlem: Celebrating Cecil
May 8 - 9, 8:00 and 10:00 pm, at Harlem Stage Gatehouse
Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival Runs May 7 - 13, 2012
All Tickets Just $10 or Free!
The prestige of the past. The pulse of the present.
HARLEM, USA, April 19, 2012 - The inaugural Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival debuted in 2011, and paid tribute to the legendary clubs and venues of the Harlem Renaissance. For its stunning encore, the second edition of the Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival, Harlem Stage presents A Tribute to Club Harlem: Celebrating Cecil featuring Vijay Iyer, Craig Taborn and Amina Claudine Myers, with special guest Amiri Baraka, paying tribute to Cecil Taylor, the New York-born octogenarian pianist/composer/educator and MacArthur "genius" Grant recipient, at Harlem Stage Gatehouse, 150 Convent Avenue at West 135th Street, on Tuesday, May 8, and Wednesday, May 9, at 8:00 pm.
Since his groundbreaking debut on the scene in the fifties, with what jazz scholar Ted Gioia described as his "... arch dissonances, fragmented single note lines, disjointed and the jackhammer piano attack, " Taylor almost single-handedly redefined the art of jazz piano and set the jazz world on fire with his seminal recordings including Jumpin' Punkins, Conquistador!, and Fly!, Fly!, Fly!, Fly!.
The tribute features three of the most soulful and syncopatingly scientific pianists on the scene in solo and duo settings: Vijay Iyer, forward-thinking pianist/composer who can conjure up a melodious, mystic brew of quantum-coded jazz, from Thelonious Monk and Duke Ellington to Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder, Heatwave and M.I.A.; piano and keyboard wizard Craig Taborn, whose handful of keys has provided an ivory tower of support for some of the most acclaimed leaders, including David Murray, James Carter and Chris Potter, who can swing anything from post-bop to electronica; and Amina Claudine Myers, whose five decades of indigo-drenched piano stylings have illuminated an expansive array of improvisational idioms and artists including, Chicago's AACM, Lester Bowie, Sonny Stitt, Little Milton and Charlie Haden's Liberation Music Orchestra.
The concert will be followed by "Decoding Cecil, " a discussion on Taylor's artistic legacy and contributions with the performing artists and professor of music at Columbia University George E. Lewis, and also showcase the history of Club Harlem, the 145th Street joint where Cecil Taylor played his first gig on an upright piano with sometimes only eight working keys.
Although not part of the Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival, Harlem Stage will present An Intimate Evening with Cecil Taylor on Thursday, May 17, at 7:30 pm.
Tribute to Club Harlem: Celebrating Cecil is produced by Harlem Stage, as part of the Harlem Stride series, in partnership with the Issue Project Room, The Center for Jazz Studies at Columbia University, and Harlem Stage Gatehouse.
Tickets are $10 and are available at www.harlemstage.org.
The Apollo Theater, Harlem Stage and Jazzmobile, Inc. have joined forces again to present the second annual Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival May 7-13, 2012. Continuing the mission of the inaugural festival, the three venerable cultural organizations will present a series of concerts and events to celebrate the rich legacy of jazz in the uptown community.
Other highlights of the 2012 Harlem Jazz Shrines Festival include:
• Wycliffe Gordon's Jazz à la Carte - The Apollo's variety shows of the 1930's made a stellar comeback last year under the music direction of composer/trombonist Wycliffe Gordon and the director/choreographer Kenneth L. Roberson. The show returns when Gordon celebrates the world-renowned Apollo with host Maurice Hines, tap star Savion Glover, the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra, vocalist Theresa Thomason, pianist Aaron Diehl, trumpeter Philip Dizack, trombonist/vocalist Natalie Cressman and the Apollo Dancers.
• Small's Paradise: (Re) Created - Jazzmobile will take the bold leap to re-create the legendary Small's Paradise, once Harlem's premier night spot and longest-operating club. Working in collaboration with the Government and Community Affairs Department at the City College of New York, Jazzmobile will re-create Small's Paradise at Harlem USA, featuring the Revive Music Paradise Band, a 12-piece house band backing the famous Small's floor show complete with dancers (tap and swing) and singers recalling the music of Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway and James P. Johnson. Small's Paradise (Re)Created sheds new light on an old tradition.
• Showman's Late Night Jazz - A week-long series produced by the Apollo Theater and Showman's at the legendary club frequented by Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughan, Pearl Bailey, Grady Tate and countless others, continues the tradition with sessions featuring Danny Mixon, Lonnie Youngblood, Lou Volpe, Cynthia Holiday and Sarah McLawler.
• Tribute to Clark Monroe's Uptown House at Harlem Stage Gatehouse - Featuring some of the world's finest instrumentalists and vocalists, this year's Grammy winner for Best Jazz Vocal Album The Mosaic Project gives females a place to support and celebrate each other from a musical and social perspective. Terri Lyne Carrington will be joined by Lizz Wright, Nona Hendryx, Ingrid Jensen, Tia Fuller, Helen Sung, Mimi Jones and Nir Felder to construct creative consciousness as "women with voices."
• Minton's Playhouse: Legends on the Bandstand - Jazzmobile brings the famed club on 118th Street back to life with a celebration of some of the legends of the esteemed bandstand. Acknowledging iconic contributions are keepers of the flame, including TK Blue celebrating Charlie Parker, octogenarian Barry Harris remembering Thelonious Monk, Winard Harper with a tribute to Max Roach and an artist TBD paying homage to Dizzy Gillespie. Each set will be followed by a late night jam.
The three partners are again collaborating with Columbia University to bring humanities programming that will further highlight the cultural significance of Harlem and the Festival. The University's programming includes The Savoy King, a documentary on Swing-era drummer/bandleader Chick Webb, Ella Fitzgerald and the renowned Savoy Ballroom as well as an exploration of the spiritual dimensions of Harlem's aesthetic legacies in jazz.
For the complete festival line-up and more information, log on to www.harlemjazzshrines.org.
# # #
More Information: http://www.harlemjazzshrines.org
Carolyn McClair Public Relations