ICYMI: Aardvark Jazztet Performed in NH

Aardvark Jazztet: Duke Ellington CelebrationIn case you missed it: Last summer, in New Hampshire, the Aardvark Jazztet, comprised of members from the larger orchestra, performed two shows in August, in Claremont and Cornish, New Hampshire.

Saturday, August 3, 2019 at 6:30 pm
Aardvark Jazztet: Duke Ellington Celebration
Mark Harvey, music director
Arni Cheatham and Peter H. Bloom, woodwinds; John Funkhouser, piano; Jesse Williams, string bass; Harry Wellott, drums
West Claremont Center for the Arts, 133 Old Church Rd, Claremont NH.
Information:  802.738.0022

The Aardvark Jazztet celebrated Duke Ellington (1899-1974) in his 120th birthday year, with music spanning four decades and many genres.  Selections from the Swing Era  dinclude Solitude, In a Mellotone, and Take the A Train (Billy Strayhorn’s theme song for the Ellington Orchestra).  Ellington’s film music was represented by Pie Eye’s Blues from the score for Otto Preminger’s Anatomy of a Murder, and Duke’s theatrical dimension was heard in the lovely ballad I Got It Bad (and That Ain’t Good) from the musical Jump for Joy.  The Jazztet also performed Ellington’s toe-tapping bossa nova Heaven from The Second Sacred Concert.

Sunday, August 4, 2019 at 2:00 pm
Aardvark Jazztet: Celebrating Augustus Saint-Gaudens
World premiere of Mark Harvey’s Consecration, commissioned for the occasion
St Gaudens National Historic Site, Cornish, NH
Information:  802.738.0022 or (603) 675-2175

The Aardvark Jazztet honored Augustus Saint-Gaudens and his monumental Robert Gould Shaw Memorial sculpture with two pieces by music director Mark Harvey:  the world premiere of Harvey’s Consecration, commissioned for the occasion, and Harvey’s composition Faces of Souls, with echoes of Charles Ives.  The August 4 concert also celebrated Duke Ellington’s 120th birthday year, with Come Sunday, It’s Freedom, and other music by the maestro.  The concert, called Memory, Hope and Freedom, explored themes of justice and equality in the work of Saint-Gaudens, Ellington and Harvey.

About the Aardvark Jazztet:
The musicians of the Aardvark Jazztet (Mark Harvey, trumpet and music director; Arni Cheatham, saxophones; Peter H. Bloom, flutes and saxophones; John Funkhouser, piano; Jesse Williams, string bass; Harry Wellott, drums) are members of the legendary Aardvark Jazz Orchestra (now in its 46th season).  These six musicians have impressive credentials playing with leading jazz, blues, and classical ensembles, as well as national and international touring experience.  The Aardvark Jazztet has appeared at the Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site, the West Claremont Center for the Arts, Ocean Park Music Festival, Harvard University, and the Rockport Music Festival, to name a few.