On Friday, June 21, Flushing Town Hall’s Queens Jazz Orchestra will return to the stage to present new music by National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master, Dr. Jimmy Heath. “It Ain’t Over Yet” will span the corridors of Dr. Heath’s musical and creative imagination, showing that jazz continues to be a vibrant musical force.
For the past 11 years, the Queens Jazz Orchestra has performed for thousands of jazz lovers under the direction of Dr. Heath. The 17-piece big band features established jazz heroes and the next generation of greats. This year’s show will present the new music of Jimmy Heath and honor his life’s journey through jazz.
“This show will both pay tribute to historic Queens jazz artists and introduce new music to the audience,” says Dr. Heath. “We hope this talented group of musicians will inspire people of all ages to continue to appreciate the genre, or to discover their love for jazz.”
Dr. Heath feels it is important to preserve the history of jazz, and to keep it vibrant. “We are carrying on the American tradition of jazz by playing contemporary and historic compositions,” he says.
Heath’s compositions have been recorded by other legendary artists and jazz greats, including Art Farmer, Cannonball Adderley, Clark Terry, Chet Baker, Miles Davis, James Moody, Milt Jackson, Ahmad Jamal, Ray Charles, Dizzy Gillespie J.J Johnson and Dexter Gordon. As Gillespie once quipped, “All I can say is, if you know Jimmy Heath, you know Bop.”
During his storied career, Queens resident Jimmy Heath has performed on more than 100 record albums including seven with The Heath Brothers and twelve as a leader. Jimmy has also written more than 125 compositions, many of which have become jazz standards. He has also composed extended works– seven suites and two string quartets– and he premiered his first symphonic work, “Three Ears,” in 1988.
“We are thrilled to once again present Flushing Town Hall’s Queens Jazz Orchestra,” says Flushing Town Hall Executive and Artistic Director, Ellen Kodadek. “The annual performance embodies the deep roots of jazz in our borough. Jimmy Heath has expertly led the Queens Jazz Orchestra since its inception, and we know jazz lovers will be inspired by the music from his newest album.”
The show will also feature Antonio Hart (alto and soprano saxophones, flute); Mark Gross (alto and soprano saxophones, flute); Bobby LaVell (tenor saxophone, flute); Sam Dillion (tenor saxophone); Gary Smulyan (baritone saxophone); John Mosca (trombone); Steve Davis (trombone); Jason Jackson (trombone); Douglas Purviance (bass trombone); Frank Greene (trumpet, flugelhorn); Michael Philip Mossman (frumpet, flugelhorn); Freddy Hendrix (trumpet, flugelhorn); Mike Rodriguez (trumpet, flugelhorn); Jeb Patton (piano); David Wong (bass); and Evan Sherman (drums).
Tickets are $42, $32 for members, $20 for students, and free for teens. The event is open to all ages. You can access details by visiting http://www.flushingtownhall.org/ or by calling (718) 463-7700 x222.
Flushing Town Hall is accessible by car, bus, train and foot – located a short distance from the 7 train – at 137-35 Northern Blvd., in Flushing, Queens. Access for wheelchair users and individuals with limited mobility is available.
Once again, Flushing Town Hall is opening its doors to teenagers – for free. Under the “Teen Access Program,” all 13- to 19-year-old teens (whether a member or not) will be welcomed to attend any performance for free. The program is designed to appeal to students and help foster a greater love for arts and culture.