We’d like to give a huge, swingin’ welcome to our latest Advertiser – the Highline Classic Jazz Festival – with two shows at Burien’s Performing Arts Center on Saturday, Feb. 19th, a matinee at 2pm and an evening show at 7pm.
Although there are a lot of fine music festivals in the Puget Sound area, the only one that celebrates the first half century of Jazz in ALL its forms is the Highline Classic Jazz Festival. From its birth in New Orleans at the turn of the 20th century through the wildly popular mid-century Big Band era, America’s unique art form constantly reinvented itself, lending it’s exuberant rhythms and tonality to other musical styles and borrowing from them as well.
Presented by Burien Arts, a non-profit group dedicated to providing access to visual and performing arts in the Burien/Highline area, the Highline Classic Jazz Festival seeks to keep alive the diversity and freedom of expression of that wonderful era by presenting a variety of early Jazz styles in a fun one-day event at a single venue.
This year’s festival includes New Orleans and Chicago style Hot Jazz (aka Dixieland), Gypsy Jazz, Ragtime & Stride Piano, Jump, Swing Standards, and Novelty Tunes from the 20’s and 30’s (check out videos from the artists below).
Here’s more info from the event’s organizers:
Six top jazz performers, including Rebecca Kilgore and the Butch Thompson Trio, will appear at the Highline Classic Jazz Festival on Saturday, Feb. 19.
Two shows, a matinee at 2 p.m. and an evening performance at 7 p.m., will feature a mix of early 20th-century jazz styles, from Dixieland and Gypsy to ragtime and swing. The Canote Brothers will emcee both shows at the Highline Performing Arts Center, 401 S. 152nd St., Burien.
The afternoon program will include vocalist Rebecca Kilgore with pianist Dave Frishberg performing favorites from the Great American Songbook, the Gypsy-style quintet Pearl Django and traditional jazz pianist Ray Skjelbred.
The evening show will present the Butch Thompson Trio, best known for ragtime and a long run on “A Prairie Home Companion” radio show, the Chicago and New Orleans Dixieland septet Holotradband and jump and jive artists Casey MacGill & Blue 4 Trio.
Tickets are $20 per show for adults or $35 for both shows. Admission is free to those 18 and under. For $100, individual sponsors receive two all-day passes, preferred seating and other extras. Tickets are available at Burien Press, 423 152nd St. SW, Burien, and Allusia, 921 SW 152nd St., Burien, by calling Burien Arts at 206-244-7808 or at the door. Tickets and more information about the festival and the performers also are available at www.highlineclassicjazz.com.
The third annual festival is organized by Burien Arts, a nonprofit group dedicated to providing access to visual and performing arts in the Burien/Highline area. Several of this year’s acts also performed at the earlier festivals, according to Lance Haslund, festival director who also is a member of Holotradband.
“Even with the economy still in bad shape, we decided to give this another try,” he said. “We have great support from the musicians and think this is a wonderful way for people to hear excellent performers for a very reasonable price.”
The festival is a veritable history lesson in jazz as well as a highly entertaining event suitable for all ages. From its birth in New Orleans at the turn of the 20th century through the wildly popular Big Band era, America’s unique art form has constantly reinvented itself, lending its exuberant rhythms and tonality to other musical styles as well as borrowing from them. Festival organizers hope to keep alive the diversity and freedom of expression of the jazz era with this one-day event at a single venue.
“There are a lot of fine jazz festivals in the area, but this is the only one that celebrates the first half-century of jazz in ALL its forms, from the beginning through swing,” Haslund said.
By offering free admission to teens, Burien Arts hopes to expose young people to jazz musicians who often play in adults-only venues.
The festival lineup includes several longtime performers at Seattle’s clubs and jazz events, such as Pearl Django and Ray Skjelbred, as well as some from out of town. Rebecca Kilgore lives in Portland and Butch Thompson is based in Minneapolis.
“As a group, they have most of the jazz styles covered,” Haslund said. “Most have been performing for decades all over the world. We’re fortunate to bring them together for the festival so people have a chance to sample jazz at its best.”
Here’s the schedule:
Saturday, February 19, 2011 (shows start at 2 and 7 pm)
Both shows feature musical Emcees The Canote Brothers.
2PM Matinee Show Features:
7PM Show Features:
Butch Thompson Trio
You may know him from his long run on A Prairie Home Companion. Now discover Butch Thompson as one of the world’s top jazz and ragtime performers, a concert artist who connects easily with his audience as he gives them a personally guided tour of a rich American tradition. With dazzling technique and engaging commentary, Butch establishes a rapport that makes any concert hall seem intimate. Butch Thompson – piano; Matt Weiner – bass; Chris Tyle – drums www.butchthompson.com
Rebecca Kilgore with pianist Dave Frishberg
Rebecca Kilgore is one of America’s leading song stylists who finds particular delight in preserving and interpreting the music of the Great American Songbook. She regularly performs worldwide at jazz festivals, jazz parties, and on jazz cruises. She is a frequent guest on National Public Radio’s ‘Fresh Air’ with Terry Gross, has appeared on A Prairie Home Companion, and with Michael Feinstein at Carnegie Hall. www.rebeccakilgore.com www.davefrishberg.net
Now in their sixteenth year of performing, Pearl Django continues to be one of America’s most respected and busiest Hot Club style groups. Though still strongly influenced by the music of Django Reinhardt, Pearl Django’s repertoire now includes many original compositions. Ryan Hoffman & Troy Chapman – guitar; Michael Gray – violin; David Lange – accordion; Rick Leppanen – bass. www.pearldjango.com
One of the top Wast Coast traditional jazz pianists, Ray Skjelbred has been a featured piano soloist and band member in concerts and festivals for many years. He usually performs an eclectic mix of early jazz standards, blues, barrelhouse, classic ragtime, unexpected pop tunes and original compositions. www.rayskjelbred.com
This seven-piece band, a staple at Pioneer Square’s New Orleans Creole Restaurant, and led by cornestist Dave Holo, evokes the sounds of New Orleans and Chicago traditional and Dixieland jazz from the 20′s and 30′s. With its hard driving rhythm section and irrepressible horn line, this brash, hot and swinging improvisational group hits the spot. Dave Holo – cornet & vocals; Dave Loomis – trombone & vocals; Bruce Hall – clarinet & saxophone; Alex Guilbert – piano; Jeff Norwood – bass; Mike Dougherty – drums & vocals; Lance Haslund – guitar & vocals. www.holotradband.com
Casey MacGill & Blue 4 Trio
Casey MacGill’s Blue 4 Trio performs music that swings. Nat “King” Cole Trio meets the Mills Brothers. Fats Waller meets Fats Domino. Slim Galliard meets Fred Astaire. It is music of many decades and no decade in particular, all happening at the same time, woven into a seamless, beautiful whole. At the core of this group’s sound are the band’s sometimes sweet, sometimes rough-hewn three-part harmony vocals and a piano-ukulele-bass-and-drums rhythm section that swings in a variety of textures. Casey MacGill – piano, ukulele, cornet & vocals; Matt Weiner – bass & vocals; Mike Dougherty – drums & vocals. www.blue4trio.com
The Canote Brothers
We welcome back the fun loving, family friendly Canote Brothers as our musical Emcees. Their finely-crafted music, grounded in a number of vintage styles, sounds both familiar and fresh. Maybe it’s because these identical twins have been singing and cutting up together since they were toddlers that their relaxed performances leave their audiences with aching grin muscles. Greg Canote – violin & vocals; Jere Canote – guitar & vocals. www.canote.com
Here are the details:
WHAT: The Highline Classic Jazz Festival.
WHEN: Saturday, February 19, 2011: Matinee at 2pm, and evening show at 7pm.
WHERE: Highline Performing Arts Center, located at 401 South 152nd Street (next to Highline High School).
COST: Tickets are $20 for each show, or $35 to see both, and FREE for youth 18 and under. Buy tickets online here, or buy them in person at Burien Press (423 SW 152nd Street) or Allusia (921 SW 152nd Street) or one hour before showtime at the door Feb. 19th.
INFO: Festival-goers can also visit spirited and eclectic downtown Burien, which boasts a fantastic mix of shops, restaurants, parks and public art. Burien echoes the flair of classic jazz by transcending boundaries, embracing diversity and celebrating personal style.
The Highline Classic Jazz Festival is proudly presented by Burien Arts. Burien Arts is a local non-profit whose mission is to enrich our community by providing engaging and innovative arts programming for residents and visitors alike.