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Mingus Music performed by JALC Ensemble in Chicago

On March 28th, 2014, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis performed works by Charles Mingus and Duke Ellington.

“By spotlighting music from both artists’ enormous oeuvres in a single program, the orchestra shed light on the similarities of jazz giants often perceived as contrasting figures.

…Mingus’ music surely builds on Ellington’s precedents (as does almost everything in jazz), vigorously developing its harmonic, rhythmic and tonal vocabularies. The centerpiece here was Ron Westray’s arrangement of four pieces from Mingus’ “Tijuana Moods” album, the orchestra riding the twists and turns of this tremendously ornate music with considerable technical elan. Marsalis’ whirring, high-register trumpet flurries on “Dizzy Moods,” Elliot Mason’s lusty trombone exhortations in “Los Mariachis” and Victor Goines’ muscular tenor saxophone solo in “Ysabel’s Table Dance” stood out.

But, ultimately, it was the riot of sound that the ensemble produced, while somehow making sure that the motifs of individual orchestral sections rang out, that represented the greatest feat of this performance. That the band also looked at Mingus’ introspective side, in a warmly whispered version of his “Self-Portrait in Three Colors,” deepened one’s appreciation for the composer’s range and the performers’ sensitivity to it.”

Read the full review in the Chicago Tribune here

The College of New Jersey Presents Selections from Epitaph

The College of New Jersey

presents

Selections from Epitaph
Friday, April 4th, 2014

 

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11:30am-12:30pm – Brown Bag Lecture with Gene Santoro (author of “Myself When I Am Real: The Life and Music of Charles Mingus”)

5:30-7:00pm – Pre-concert panel discussion with Gene Santoro, Dr. Lewis Porter and Michael Conklin

8:00pm – TCNJ Jazz Ensemble

2000 Pennington Road
Ewing, NJ 08628

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Click here for more information about the event.
This event is free & open to the public

Gunther Schuller discusses “Epitaph” on January 15

Make Music New York inaugurates a new series called Make Music Monthly, featuring conversations with musical luminaries recorded live at the Cornelia Street Cafe in Greenwich Village. This series is co-presented with the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music.

On January 15, 2014, jazz historian and composer Gunther Schuller speaks about Charles Mingus’s monumental “Epitaph,” 25 years after he conducted the work’s world premiere.

Hosted by Make Music New York founder Aaron Friedman, the discussion will be recorded and published as a podcast available on the Make Music New York and New School websites.

 

‘Mingus’: Powerful and heartbreaking documentary portrait of the Jazz giant

“Tuesday, November 22nd, 1966, jazz musician Charlie Mingus waited with his five-year-old daughter Carolyn, to be evicted from his studio at 22 Great Jones Street, New York. Mingus had planned to open a music school and jazz workshop at this Lower East Side loft, but he had been frustrated in his intentions and had fallen behind in the rent.

As he waited for the NYPD and the Sanitation Department to arrive and remove his belongings, filmmaker Thomas Reichman recorded an intimate portrait of one of the jazz music’s greatest composers and performers. In the film, Mingus is seen moving distractedly amongst his boxed possessions, showing great affection for his daughter, recalling happier times living on Fifth Avenue, and acknowledging the inherent racism in America by offering his own Pledge of Allegiance….”

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