Jazz on the River set for Saturday, April 17

The Arna Bontemps African American  Museum will present its 15th Annual Jazz on the River, Saturday, April 17, 2010, at the Alexandria Amphitheatre in downtown Alexandria.  Jazz on the River 2010, which is being held in conjunction with the South West Athletic Conference (SWAC) Tennis Championship Tournament April 15-17, will feature award winning international entertainer Kathy Wade “The First Voice of a New Era” of Cincinnati and The Nile Rhythm Band featuring Maynard Batiste in a free evening concert (6-10 PM) on the banks of the scenic Red River.

Also performing will be the Bontempian Big Band, a 16-20-piece jazz ensemble comprised of outstanding Central Louisiana high school students who participate in a jazz residency under the direction of noted music educator Wilmer Christophe.

Kathy Wade, #1 Jazz and Blues Vocalist on MP3.com; #1MP3.com Jazz Vocal Time to Say Good-bye featured on Sci-Fi network’s First Wave sound track and featured in Essence Magazine, March 1999 (Teaching With Music).  Kathy is an award winning international entertainer whose “rich interpretative skills as a song stylist extraordinaire” capture the imagery of emotion on her recording, You Got The Magic and upcoming release, Kathy Wade, Klassic.  (DAKA Music) “Magic,” recorded in Los Angeles, accents Kathy’s “multi-octave contralto of effervescent energy” with world-renowned musicians including Gerald Albright, Harvey Mason and GRAMMY nominated arranger, Producer/Pianist, Bill Cunliffe.  Kathy has opened for Dionne Warwick, Cleo Laine, Nancy Wilson, Diane Schuur, Shirley Horn, Anita Baker, Kenny G, Whitney Houston, David Sanborn, George Benson, Al Jarreau, Stephanie Mills, Jonathan Butler, Frankie Beverly and Maze, Will Downing, Najee and Ramsey Lewis.
The Nile Rhythm Band featuring Maynard Batiste, Jazz pianist and composer,taking Jazz and Rhythm to another level.” Mr. Batiste is the son of the late, great Alvin Batiste, Jazz clarinetist.

Jazz on the River is a free outdoor community jazz concert sponsored by the Arna Bontemps Museum every year since 1996. The organization has three major reasons for producing and presenting this program:

1) to provide audiences outside of New Orleans and the “Jazz Corridor” a chance to experience live jazz, one of Louisiana’s richest art forms and arguably its greatest gift to the world;

2) to cultivate more venues for the performance of jazz in Central Louisiana, of which there are very few;
3) to showcase the art form which profoundly influenced Arna Bontemps and other artists of his era – the Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age – including Langston Hughes, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ezra Pound, James Joyce, and Ernest Hemingway. Over the past ten years, Jazz on the River has evolved into Central Louisiana’s premiere jazz event, each year featuring an impressive line-up of internationally acclaimed jazz artists and local talents. Past performers include Ellis Marsalis, Alvin Batiste, Kathy Wade, the Ed Perkins Quartet, the Quamon Fowler Quintet featuring Grammy®-nominee Maurice Brown, Kent Jordan, and Grammy®-winner Nicholas Payton.

Jazz on the River 2010 is a continuum of New Orleans jazz, the birthplace of jazz.

Jazz on the River is sponsored by the Arna Bontemps African American Museum and co-sponsored by the City of Alexandria.

Tables with a seating for ten will be available for reservation at $200.00 to help offset the cost of the concert. For more information, contact the Museum at 318-473-4692 or 318-448-4697.

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