Juilliard Jazz Presents “The Music of Thelonious Monk” Conducted by Wynton Marsalis

Mike Lawson • News • March 24, 2016

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Wynton MarsalisNEW YORK – Juilliard Jazz presents “The Music of Thelonious Monk” performed by the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra, conducted by Wynton Marsalis, director of Juilliard Jazz, with guest pianist Helen Sung, also a member of the Juilliard Jazz faculty, on Tuesday, April 5, 2016, at 7:30pm in Alice Tully Hall.

Tickets for the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra concert are $30 and available at events.juilliard.edu.Tickets are free for Juilliard students; non-Juilliard students with valid ID may purchase tickets for $15.

Members of the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra are saxophonists Zoe Obadia, Immanuel Wilkins, Julian Lee, Christopher Bittner, and Dean Tsur; trumpeters John Whitcomb, Noah Halpern, Anthony Hervey, and Enrique Sanchez; trombonists Nick Lee, Sam Chess, Will Hawley, and Jeffery Miller; guitarist Lake Jiroudek; pianists Isaiah Thompson and Micah Thomas; bassist Sebastian Rios; and drummer Jared Silverstein. James Burton III is resident conductor.

Thelonious Monk was a pianist and composer with a startingly original sound. He was one of the creators of the 1940’s bebop style, which developed during his time as the house pianist at Minton’s Playhouse in Harlem. His more than 80 works include numerous classic jazz standards.

The program features Monk compositions: Four in One (arr. Chuck Israels); Evidence (arr. Chris Crenshaw); Epistrophy (arr. Wynton Marsalis); Bye Ya (arr. Carlos Henriquez); Criss Cross (arr. Ali Jackson); Humph (arr. Ted Nash); Light Blue (arr. Vincent Gardner); Ugly Beauty (arr. Wynton Marsalis); and We See (arr. Sherman Irby).

Wynton Marsalis

Wynton Marsalis, a New Orleans native, is an internationally acclaimed musician, composer, bandleader, educator, and a leading advocate of American culture. He is the world’s first jazz artist to perform and compose across the full jazz spectrum, from its New Orleans roots to bebop to modern jazz. In 1982, he made his recording debut as a leader, and he has since recorded more than 70 jazz and classical recordings. He has been awarded nine Grammy Awards and sold over seven million copies worldwide. In 1983, he became the first and only artist to win both classical and jazz Grammys in the same year, repeating the distinction the following year. In 1997, he became the first jazz musician to win the Pulitzer Prize for his oratorio, Blood on the Fields. He received the National Medal of Arts in 2005, and that same year Britain’s senior conservatory, the Royal Academy of Music, granted him Honorary Membership. In 2009, the French Ministry of Culture honored him with the insignia of Chevalier of the Legion of Honor. He has written six books, including: Moving to Higher Ground: How Jazz Can Change Your Life with Geoffrey C. Ward; and Squeak, Rumble, Whomp! Whomp! Whomp! illustrated by Paul Rogers. Mr. Marsalis helped lead the effort to construct Jazz at Lincoln Center’s home in New York City, the Frederick P. Rose Hall, the first education, performance, and broadcast facility devoted to jazz, which opened its doors in 2004. In 2012, Mr. Marsalis was named cultural correspondent for CBS News and in 2014, he joined Juilliard as its director of Jazz Studies. He also serves as the managing and artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center.

About Helen Sung

Helen SungPianist and composer Helen Sung is from Houston, Texas. An aspiring classical pianist before jazz intervened during undergraduate studies at the University of Texas at Austin, she went on to graduate from the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Performance (at the New England Conservatory) and win the Kennedy Center’s Mary Lou Williams Jazz Piano Competition. Now based in New York City, she has worked with artists including the late Clark Terry, Ron Carter, Steve Turre, Wayne Shorter, and Regina Carter. With five albums as a leader, Ms. Sung’s most recent release, Anthem for a New Day (2014), is her major label debut on Concord Records. She has appeared at major festivals across the U.S. including those in Newport, Monterey, Detroit, and San Francisco. She has also appeared at Carnegie Hall and her “NuGenerations” Project toured southern Africa as a U.S. State Department Jazz Ambassador. International engagements include the London Jazz Festival and Shanghai’s JZ Festival. She appears regularly with ensembles including the Mingus Big Band, Mingus Dynasty Band, T.S. Monk Band, and Terri Lyne Carrington’s Mosaic Project. An active composer, Ms. Sung was awarded a 2014 Chamber Music America/Doris Duke Foundation New Jazz Works Grant. Inspired by her experience at the Monk Institute, she stays involved in music education through residencies, workshops, and clinics. Last fall, Ms. Sung joined the jazz faculties at Juilliard and Columbia University.

About James Burton III

Trombonist James Burton III was mentored by saxophone master Jackie McLean and trombone legend Curtis Fuller. He has performed and recorded with such artists as Illinois Jacquet, Gerald Wilson, James Moody, Frank Wess, Benny Golson, Jimmy Heath, Slide Hampton, Ron Carter, Joe Chambers, and Christian McBride. Mr. Burton has also performed with the Ray Charles Orchestra, Duke Ellington Orchestra, Count Basie Orchestra, Lionel Hampton Orchestra, Dizzy Gillespie All-Stars, Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, and Roy Hargrove Big Band. He graduated summa cum laude from the Hartt School in Hartford, and received his M.M. and Artist Diploma from Juilliard. At Juilliard, he received Morse and Gluck Fellowships and was awarded the William Schuman Prize in 2009. Formerly director of jazz studies at Snow College in Ephraim, Utah, he joined the Juilliard faculty in 2011, teaching jazz theory and jazz studies and coaching the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra.

About Juilliard Jazz

Now in its 14th season, Juilliard Jazz offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees and the artist diploma. The curriculum combines classroom, private studio, and performance ensemble courses with substantial interactions with jazz masters and multiple off-campus performance opportunities. The department’s programming reflects a focus on the jazz continuum and its American vernacular roots, and on the social and cultural vitality of the music.

In the 2015-16 season, Juilliard Jazz welcomes such legendary artists as alto saxophonist Lee Konitz, coaching the students in music from the seminal 1949-50 Birth of the Cool sessions, and this concert with tenor giant Jimmy Heath in a program of big band bebop music-both men were there at the genesis of the music. Other eminent guest coaches and conductors this season include clarinetist Dr. Michael White; bassist and alumnus Christian McBride; saxophonist/composer/arranger and faculty member Andy Farber; trumpeters Scotty Barnhart and Dave Douglas; pianist Chano Domínguez; and bandleader and multi-instrumentalist Vince Giordano.

Guest artists coaching and conducting our students in the 2014-15 season included clarinetists Victor Goines and Dr. Michael White; saxophonists Charles McPherson, Ted Nash, and Loren Schoenberg; trumpeters Jon Faddis and Valery Ponomarev; bassist Andy González; and Latin percussionist Jimmy Delgado. The season also marked the return of two Juilliard alumni to lead the program, trumpeter/composer Wynton Marsalis as director, and chair and associate director Aaron Flagg. The season’s concerts covered the music of Charles Mingus, Dave Brubeck, Ornette Coleman, Miles Davis, Art Blakey, John Coltrane, Jelly Roll Morton, Duke Ellington, and Israel “Cachao” López.

Highlights of the 2011-14 seasons included pianist and MacArthur Fellow Jason Moran and trombonist Wycliffe Gordon as artists-in-residence; guest appearances by saxophonists Bobby Watson, George Coleman, Joe Lovano, and Gary Smulyan, saxophonist/clarinetist Paquito D’Rivera, pianist Harold Mabern, and singer Jane Monheit; master classes with drummer Ignacio Berroa and pianist Bill Charlap; and a concert tribute to legendary bassist and faculty member Ron Carter with guests Benny Golson, Jim Hall, Herbie Hancock, Hubert Laws, and Christian McBride.

Juilliard Jazz ensembles play more than 50 on- and off-campus performances annually, including international tours and performances at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola at Jazz at Lincoln Center. For the past several seasons they also have enjoyed weeklong runs there with such jazz greats as faculty member Kenny Barron and guests Ernie Andrews, Tom Harrell, Lew Tabackin, Bobby Watson, Frank Wess, and Gerald Wilson.



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