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Jazz at Lincoln Center – “Who is Duke Ellington?”

Jazz at Lincoln Center is, in this blogger’s humble opinion, one of the finest cultural institutions in NYC and indeed, the U.S., that no one seems to know about! With Wynton Marsalis at the helm, JALC has tapped into the dual needs of the Ken Burns educate-me-gently generation and our collective yen for good, old-fashioned quality entertainment to provide some of the best programming around with the world’s finest performers.

For those of us who would rather not see jazz devolve as an art form into mere muzak, they provide the most vital service of all: programming for children. This Saturday, November 5th, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis will present a Family Concert simply titled “Who is Duke Ellington?”

This is a question that probably would not vex even the most casual of jazz listeners, but in our shared musical and cultural history, this is a very important question. Luckily, the Duke left behind a massive legacy of compositions, recordings and written materials that make this a very rewarding question indeed.

With pre-concert educational activities, the option to bring an instrument for a workshop, and performances by one of the finest jazz orchestras around, this is a concert not to be missed!

Check out JALC’s Ellington 101 brochure and their link to the Duke in a 1942 performance of “C Jam Blues.”

And of course, this post wouldn’t be complete without a great quip from the man himself:

“By and large, jazz has always been like the kind of a man you wouldn’t want your daughter to associate with.”


  1. Justin says:

    I opened up comments on this just so that I could say that “the Ken Burns educate-me-gently generation” is a fine, fine line.

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