[ Concerts ]
Ellington Series presents Piano Jazz Summit March 4
The Ellington Jazz Series at the Yale School of Music presents the Piano Jazz Summit, Friday, March 4 at 7:30 pm. The concert features three of the jazz world’s great pianists: Barry Harris, Toshiko Akiyoshi, and Aaron Diehl.
The program will feature the pianists playing alone, and together as a trio, as well as speaking about their lives as performers and their relationship to jazz. The audience can also look forward to a special live video projection of the keyboard, offering the a bird’s-eye view of the pianists’ hands. Willie Ruff, artistic director of the Ellington Jazz Series, calls this concert “a rare opportunity to hear three master pianists.”
The concert takes place at Morse Recital Hall in Sprague Hall (470 College Street, New Haven). Tickets start at $20, $10 with student ID. Purchase online, call 203 432-4158, or visit the box office at 470 College Street.
Barry Harris was introduced to the piano at the age of four. Now an internationally renowned pianist, composer, and teacher, Dr. Harris has devoted his life to the advancement of Jazz and in 1996 was the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from Northwestern University. For the past several decades Dr. Harris has been an exponent of the classic jazz style that was developed by Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, and Bud Powell, among others.
Toshiko Akiyoshi was discovered in 1952 when the great Canadian pianist Oscar Peterson saw her playing in a night club in Japan. Since then, her contributions to the jazz world have established her as an unparalleled pianist and composer. A 14-time Grammy nominee, she founded the Toshiko Akiyoshi Jazz Orchestra, about which jazz critic Leonard Feather wrote “Greatness is greatness… I think you will find it in this magnificently variegated, consistently exciting example of one of the outstanding orchestras of our time.”
At just 30 years old, Aaron Diehl is already a highly regarded pianist, playing with what the New York Times describes as “melodic precision, harmonic erudition, and elegant restraint.” Willie Ruff calls him “the inheritor of advances in the art of playing the jazz piano.” He has released two CDs to critical acclaim, and performed with artists such as Warren Wolf, Lew Tabackin, Matt Wilson, Wynton Marsalis, and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra.