BY LIZA MITCHELL
The Jazz Discovery Series at the Ritz Theatre & Museum is a new effort to highlight some of the hottest new jazz artists from around the country at an affordable cost. “We wanted to provide Jacksonville’s jazz lovers with concert experience of top notch quality at a price that is low enough for people to take a risk and see a performer they might not have heard of yet,” says Liz McDonald, Director of The Ritz Theatre & Museum.Charenee Wade, the first runner-up of the Thelonious Monk International Vocal competition, kicks off the series at 8pm on Friday, June 12th. As a singer, composer, arranger, and educator, Wade received a degree from the Manhattan School of Music and is currently a professor at the Aaron Copland School of Music. She also teaches various workshops and clinics with the Jazzmobile Workshop Program. Wade was chosen as one of four artists to perform her original music at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Her debut CD Love Walked In was released in July of 2010 (www.chareneemusic.com).
The Jazz Discovery Series is curated by University of North Florida alumnus and jazz arranger, producer, and artist John Lumpkin. Presented by SMG, the Jazz Discovery Series features the John Lumpkin Trio as the house band. “Jacksonville loves jazz,” says Lumpkin. “The Jazz Discovery series introduces our community to amazingly talented musicians that are leading the next generation of jazz.” In addition to being on staff at UNF and Douglas Anderson School of the Arts, Lumpkin holds a Master’s Degree from Florida State University and has shared the stage with such notable musicians as Delfeayo Marsalis, Wycliffe Gordon, and Marcus Roberts, among others.
Other artists scheduled to perform include Brianna Thomas on July 24th and Gina Saputo on August 22nd. Thomas is billed as one of “the best young jazz singer[s] of her generation” by the Wall Street Journal (www.briannathomas.com). Saputo is the prodigy of mutli-Grammy Award-winning Herbie Hancock (www.ginasaputo.com). Tickets are $15 and are available at the Tom Bush Family of Dealerships Box Offices located at the Ritz Theatre and Museum. Tickets may also be purchased at www.ticketmaster.com. Special group discount rates are available. Call 807-2010 or visit www.ritzjacksonville.com for information. Post to Post Links II error: No post found with slug "The Ritz Theatre and Museum" is located in downtown Jacksonville at 829 North Davis Street.