Jul 19 2010
WASHINGTON SQUARE MUSIC FESTIVAL ENDS 50th PARK SEASON WITH THE CHARLES MINGUS ORCHESTRA, A FREE JAZZ CONCERT
On Tuesday, July 27 at 8 pm in Washington Square,
the Charles Mingus Orchestra closes the Washington Square Music Festival’s 52nd season by performing works by the late Charles Mingus. The concert is free and celebrates a great American composer, who left his legacy in the worlds of both jazz and the civil rights struggle.
Seating is on a first-come, first served basis in front of the Holley Statue, in the northwest quadrant of the Square. The Festival is under the auspices of the Washington Square Association, Inc. Rainspace is St. Joseph’s Church, 371 Sixth Avenue.
Festival info: 212-252-3621 www.washingtonsquaremusicfestival.org
Charles Mingus Orchestra – July 27, 8 pm Washington Square
“Taurus in the Arena of Life”
(features French Horn)
“Better get hit in your soul”
“Consider me, oh lord”
“Meditations for Moses”
(arrangement by bassist Boris Kozlov)
“Noddin’ your Head blues”
(trio for flute, bass clarinet & bassoon)
Craig Handy, alto saxophone//flute
Scott Robinson, tenor saxophone/flute
Ku-umba Frank Lacy, trombone
Kenny Rampton, trumpet
Donald Edwards, drums
Boris Kozlov, bass
Michael Rabinowitz, bassoon
Jeff Scott, French horn
David Gilmore, guitar
Doug Yates, bass clarinet
Charles Mingus (1922-79) double-bass player, composer and pianist: Born on a military base in Nogales, Arizona in 1922 and raised in Watts, California, his earliest musical influences came from the church– choir and group singing– and from hearing Duke Ellington over the radio when he was eight years old. He studied double bass and composition (five years with H. Rheinshagen, principal bassist of the New York Philharmonic, and compositional techniques with the legendary Lloyd Reese) while absorbing vernacular music from the great jazz masters, first-hand. In the 1940s he played with Louis Armstrong, Kid Ory, Lionel Hampton and Billy Taylor. In the 1950s after working with Charlie Parker, Bud Powell and others, he formed his own publishing and recording companies to protect and document his growing repertoire of original music. He also founded the Jazz Workshop, a group which enabled young composers to have their new works performed in concert and on recordings. Although he wrote his first concert piece, “Half-Mast Inhibition,” when he was 17 years old, it was not recorded until 20 years later by a 22-piece orchestra with Gunther Schuller conducting. It was the presentation of “Revelations” which combined jazz and classical idioms, at the 1955 Brandeis Festival of the Creative Arts, that established him as one of the foremost jazz composers of his day. The New Yorker wrote: “For sheer melodic and rhythmic and structural originality, his compositions may equal anything written in western music in the twentieth century.” www.mingusmingusmingus.com
The Charles Mingus Orchestra was assembled in 1999 by Sue Mingus, and plays with the intensity of the Mingus Big Band, but with a focus on composition and less emphasis on soloing. Its distinctive sound emerges from an expanded repertory and more exotic instrumentation, including bassoon, bass clarinet, French horn, and guitar.
The Washington Square Music Festival is made possible through The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency, and State Senator Thomas K. Duane, through NYS Parks and Recreation. Generous grants from The Earle T. & Katherine Moore Foundation, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Washington Square Association, The Margaret Neubart Foundation Trust, New York University Community Affairs, Con Edison, Salamon-Abrams Family Fund and Emigrant Savings Bank are deeply appreciated. US Recording Companies fund in part the instrumental music for the series, as arranged by Local 802, American Federation of Musicians.