Piano Jazz Summit comes to the Quick Center for the Arts March 25


With Cedar Walton, Jacky Terrasson and Hiromi Uehara

"... a rare opportunity for Connecticut concertgoers to hear some of the finest solo jazz on the concert stage." Phillip Lutz, The New York Times

When the legendary jazz impresario George Wein puts a jazz ensemble together, jazz lovers take notice. On Friday, March 25 at 8 p.m., Wein unites three generations of solo virtuoso jazz pianists on Fairfield University's Quick Center for the Arts' stage in Piano Jazz Summit, an evening of extraordinary musicianship featuring jazz master Cedar Walton, the irrepressible Jacky Terrasson and the explosively talented young Hiromi Uehara. Tickets are $40, $35, $30 for this Arts & Minds presentation.

Walton has been a fixture on the jazz scene since the late fifties and has played with many of the greats, from Art Blakey to Lou Donaldson. He has recorded with Freddie Hubbard, John Coltrane and Joe Henderson and accompanied the enchanting Abbey Lincoln from 1965-66. His solos can be pensive and exciting - often at the same time. The consistency, lyricism and tastefulness he exhibits on the keys recalls Hank Jones and Tommy Flanagan but his playing owes more to Bud Powell than anyone else and he uses Red Garlandish voicings, in his own style. Walton's most recent honor was to be named the National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master for 2010. The NEA Jazz Master is the nation's highest honor in jazz and listening to Walton's playing, one has no doubt that he earned the honor many times over.

Since her 2003 Telarc debut, keyboardist-composer Hiromi, as she is called, has electrified audiences and critics on both hemispheres with a creative energy that defies the conventional parameters of jazz and pushes musicianship and composition to unprecedented levels of complexity and sophistication. The initial buzz - critical and commercial - triggered by her first CD "Another Mind" in North America traveled all the way back to her native Japan, where the album shipped gold (100,000 units) and received the Recording Industry Association of Japan's (RIAJ) Jazz Album of the Year Award. She is no stranger to collaboration with artists of older generations and cultures. She appeared with pianist and mentor, Chick Corea on "Duet," a two-disc live recording of a performance in Tokyo. Her work with Corea transcends all boundaries to converse with each other with exuberance and passion.

Terrasson, winner of the distinctive Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition and a two-time Grammy® nominee, was acclaimed by The New York Times Magazine as "one of 30 artists under the age of 30 most likely to make an impact on American culture in the next 30 years." Since his 1994 Blue Note debut, "Jacky Terrasson," he has earned phenomenal worldwide response, ranking among Time magazine's top Albums of 1995 and this honor established him as a creator of new standards. A celebrated artist in both the U.S. and his native France, Terrasson has won many prestigious awards and played in most of the world's festivals and halls including The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center and the Montreal Jazz Festival, among others. He has collaborated with some of the most noted vocalists in jazz, recording "Rendezvous" (1997) with Cassandra Wilson and serving as arranger and accompanist with Dianne Reeves, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Jimmy Scott and Betty Carter.

Tickets are available at fairfield.edu/quick or by calling the Box Office at (203) 254-4010. The toll free number is 1-877-ARTS-396. Special offers and discounts are available through the Quick Center's e-mail list. Join, by contacting boxoffice@quickcenter.com. Become a fan of the Quick Center for the Arts on Facebook and keep up-to-date with the latest performance news, plus special offers and discounts. Find the Quick Center at www.facebook.com/FairfieldQuickCenter.

Directions: Fairfield University is located off I-95, exit 22 at 1073 North Benson Road, Fairfield, CT 06824. Access to the Quick Center for the Arts is through the Barlow Road gate at 200 Barlow Road. Special note: From Oct. 4, 2010 through June 30, 2012, the southern end of North Benson Road (Rt. 135) will be closed to traffic on nights and weekends. Round Hill Road intersects with Barlow and provides access to the Quick Center for the Arts.

Images: top) Hiromi Uehara; bottom) Jacky Terrasson

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Posted on March 4, 2011

Vol. 43, No. 225