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Jazz as a pearl, Wynton as a diamond

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis is coming to Hancher

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By Tong Tong
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The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis is going to give Iowa City an opportunity to see what some call the finest of jazz.

At 7:30 p.m. Friday, Hancher will present the group, which will transform the building from an auditorium into a house of jazz.

Jazz at Lincoln Center is the resident orchestra of the Fredrick P. Rose Hall in New York City. The band is composed of 15 members, including director Marsalis, a trumpet player and composer.

The other members include saxophonists, trumpet players, trombonists, bassists, a pianist, and a drummer. Together, they form a group that has toured in the U.S. and abroad.

There is a deep relationship between the Hancher and the jazz group. The orchestra has been part of Hancher’s seasons several times in the past, and it has long been one of Hancher’s longtime favorites.

But this show, for the first time, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra will perform in the new Hancher.

“We are anxious for them to see the new building,” said Hancher Executive Director Charles Swanson.

Hancher has been the cultural hub of the University of Iowa, and it strives to present the finest artists and world-class performances.

While its music encompasses the full range of jazz, the orchestra is also committed to bringing high levels of education to the New York community.

“Their commitment to education is also a commitment that Hancher values,” Swanson said.

The orchestra, as a result, presents a unique opportunity to college students, especially those who study jazz. Students at the show may gain inspiration and an idea of how different musicians work together on stage.

For the Hancher show, Jazz at Lincoln Center will not only perform legendary jazz selections but also many of its original works. Aimed at presenting the totality of jazz, its mission uses four main elements: educational, curatorial, archival, and ceremonial.

Steven Grismore, a UI associate professor of instruction in the School of Music, said that even though he is not sure what styles the orchestra will play, it is one of the premier jazz bands in the world, and it is capable of playing any style.

“I’ve heard that the tickets have been sold out — that should tell you something,” Grismore said. “I think everybody in town should be there.”

Jazz at the Lincoln Center Orchestra

When: 7:30 p.m., Friday

Where: Hancher

Cost: $10-$75

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