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VT Jazz Center Festivals for Emerging Artists and Solo Piano Highlight 2018-19 Concert Season
(Published: September 10, 2018)

Christian McBride and Russell Malone, among featured artists during 10 monthly performances, from September through June in Brattleboro, Vermont

Building on more than two decades of successful programming, the Vermont Jazz Center is branching out for the 208-19 concert season.

In addition to hosting some of the top artists working today, the nonprofit organization will present a pair of two-day festivals that help fulfill its goal of exposing audiences to music that connects to jazz's venerable lineage and is created by innovative voices.

This fall marks the debut of the Emerging Artist Festival (November 2-3), a marathon of clinics, college showcases and concerts culminating with a double-bill of New York-based trailblazers, Arcoiris Sandoval's modern piano trio, Sonic Asylum, and Amaury Acosta's hip-hop/latin music hybrid, King Klave, on Saturday night.

Admission prices for the festival will be reduced for youth, and free for participants in the Friday night performances schedule to take place at a number of venues around town, timed to coincide with the town's vibrant Gallery Walk scene.

When spring returns, so will the VJC's annual Solo Piano Festival (Apr. 12-13). Now in its third year, the festival will feature NEA Jazz Master Joanne Brackeen performing on the organization's celebrated nine-foot Steinway D Concert Grand piano. The Center is also partnering with the American Piano Association for the first time to bring one of their Cole Porter Fellowship award recipients to perform.

Throughout the 10 concerts spanning September through June, the VJC will present a variety of music that is emblematic of jazz's diversity. Listeners will find concerts led by immigrants who have made immense contributions to North American culture, including season opener Etienne Charles (September 15), Cuban duo Pedrito Martinez and Alfredo Rodriguez (May 18), and pianist Helen Sung (January 19), who will lead an octet through her renowned Sung with Words project from 2014.

Early North American jazz will also be celebrated. The VJC Big Band (December 7) will feature three members of the Artie Shaw Orchestra performing danceable swing music from the 1930s, while acclaimed young pianist Sullivan Fortner leads a trio (February 9) that will reach back to the 1920s to include Jelly Roll Morton's prescient piano-music, while also covering jazz standards and contemporary R&B and soul.

Perhaps the most familiar of this year's bandleaders are bassist Christian McBride (October 12) and guitarist Russell Malone (March 16). Both artists cut their teeth with bebop legends and have now moved on to establish their own unique conventions. They are part of an engaging series that follows the VJC's mandate to present artists who speak with their own unique voice, present their own projects (rather than pickup bands) and swing hard.

The season closes with another NEA Jazz Master and longtime instructor at the VJC summer jazz camps. Vocalist Sheila Jordan (June 1) and her longtime collaborator bassist Cameron Brown will be joined by VJC artistic director Eugene Uman on piano, plus a host of special guests to enhance the festivities.

More information about all of the concerts and educational offerings at the Vermont Jazz Center is available at www.vtjazz.org.

List of Concerts for VJC's 2018-2019 Series

Sept. 15 Etienne Charles and Creole Soul

Oct. 12 Christian McBride and New Jawn Quartet

Nov. 2-3 Emerging Artist Festival w/Arcoiris Sandoval's Sonic Asylum and Amaury Acosta's King Klave

Dec. 7 Big Band Gala; Tribute to the Artie Shaw Orchestra

Jan. 19 Helen Sung Octet: "Sung with Words"

Feb. 9 Sullivan Fortner Trio

Mar.16 Russell Malone Quartet

Apr.12-13 Third Annual Solo Jazz Piano Festival featuring NEA Jazz Master, Joanne Brackeen and others

May 18 Pedrito MartĂ­nez/Alfredo Rodriguez Duo
June 1 NEA Jazz Master, Sheila Jordan with Cameron Brown, Eugene Uman and friends

More Information: http://www.vtjazz.org

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