Published Thursday, April 12, 2018 3:00 pm
On April 20 & 21 at 8 p.m. at the Toledo Museum of Art’s Peristyle Theater, Sara Jobin will conduct the Toledo Symphony Orchestra (TSO) for two ProMedica Classics Series performances of Classical Ellington, exploring the orchestral world of Duke Ellington and works inspired by jazz.
The city of Toledo is known for its rich and flourishing jazz scene. Some of the greatest jazz artists began their journey in Toledo, such as Art Tatum and Ramona Collins, and have left a legacy that will forever be part of its history. Classical Ellington showcases several works written by the jazz king himself, Duke Ellington, a jazz-inspired work that was commissioned for the TSO thirty-five years ago, and a work that will make history as a world premiere on Friday and Saturday evening.
Duke Ellington has a unique connection to the Toledo Symphony, as he was the first non-classical artist to perform on the Peristyle stage on January 9, 1956. The program will open with Ellington’s version of The Nutcracker and close with his own tone poem, Harlem, a piece that illustrates the complex diversity of Harlem, New York in 1950.
Russian-born American pianist Natasha Paremski will join the TSO on stage to perform Four Parables by Toledo composer Paul Schoenfield, a work for piano and orchestra that was commissioned for the TSO thirty-five years ago on May 13, 1983 for the 1982-1983 performance season. Inspired by real-life situations, each movement in Four Parables musically depicts different environments and states of mind. “Four Parables is a beautiful and complex work whose fundamental tonal language is the blues, but you will also hear echoes of Mozart, Bolcolm, Messiaen, and burlesque!” said Sara Jobin, Resident Conductor of the Toledo Symphony Orchestra.
The TSO will make history with the world premiere of Latin Jazz Suite by Alice Gomez, a work inspired by the Cubop jazz movement of the 1940s and 1950s, when many artists incorporated elements of Cuban popular music into their jazz compositions, altering the course of American musical history forever. This piece features the TSO’s very own Principal Trumpet, Lauraine Carpenter.
“Jazz is America’s greatest export, and Ellington is one of America’s great composers. It is my honor to conduct this concert which explores three different ‘flavors’ of jazz in the concert hall - big band, Latin, and Schoenfeld’s amalgam which is influenced by Mozart and Messiaen. I’m sad it’s one of the last concerts of my tenure, but happy to be conducting this fabulous music!” said Jobin.
Classical Ellington concludes the Toledo Symphony’s North Star Festival, which celebrates the musical contribution of Black Americans throughout history from the 1850s to 1960s.
Two performances of Classical Ellington will take place Friday, April 20 and Saturday, April 21 at 8 p.m. at the Toledo Museum of Art’s Peristyle Theater. Tickets are available at toledosymphony.com or by calling the Toledo Symphony Box Office at 419-246-8000.
For more information, please contact Felecia Kanney, Director of Marketing for the Toledo Symphony at firstname.lastname@example.org.