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The ASHEVILLE JAZZ ORCHESTRA Special Concert on Sat Sept 16 2017 at 8pm

Tickets: $20

Western North Carolina is home to a thriving, vibrant and eclectic music scene. Within these mountains one can hear nearly any and every type of music from around the world.
Surprisingly, one of the more popular music forms is JAZZ.

On any night of the week one can hear great jazz being played in Asheville, Black Mountain and the surrounding areas. Furthermore, one can hear great big band jazz - from the 1920's all the way to present day.

Two bandleaders and three composers are joining forces to present a unique and original (to this area) concert of wonderful Jazz music. AN EXPERIMENT IN MODERN MUSIC.

On February 12, 1924 at Aeolian Hall in New York City, Paul Whiteman (then the most popular band leader in the country) gave a concert called "An Experiment In Modern Music". The concert was to show the progression of Jazz from 1917 to 1924. From that concert came the memorable classic, George Gershwin's RHAPSODY IN BLUE. 

In this excerpt from Whiteman’s 1926 autobiography Jazz – written with essayist Mary Margaret McBride – Whiteman writes about his Aeolian Hall concert experience:

If I’d been willing to wait a few centuries for a verdict on my work, I wouldn’t have been so wrought up over the Aeolian Hall concert. But here I saw the common people of America taking all the jazz they could get and mad to get more, yet not having the courage to admit that they took it seriously. I believed that jazz was beginning a new movement in the world’s art of music. I wanted it to be recognized as such. I knew it never would be in my lifetime until the recognized authorities on music gave it their approval.
My idea for the concert was to show these skeptical people the advance which had been made in popular music from the day of discordant early jazz to the melodious form of the present. I believed that most of them had grown so accustomed to condemning the “Livery Stable Blues” sort of thing that they went on flaying modern jazz without realizing that it was different from the crude early attempts – that it had taken a turn for the better.
My task was to reveal the change and try to show that jazz had come to stay and deserved recognition.....
......But how would people take it? Would we be the laughingstock of the town when we woke the “morning after”? Would the critics decide I was trying to be smart and succeeding being only smart-alecky? Or might I be able to convince the crowd that I was engaged in a sincere experiment, designed to exhibit what had been accomplished in the past few years with respect to scoring and arranging music for the popular band – that we were making a bona fide attempt to around an interest in popular music rhythm for purposes of advancing serious musical composition?


Now to present day - 
The Asheville Concert Jazz Orchestra
 (under the direction of Dr. David Wilken
will present a new
 on September 16, 2017 at the White Horse Music Hall in Black Mountain, NC. 

The A.J.O. will be adding a string section, additional woodwinds and french horns for this concert.

Joining David and the A.J.O. will be guest conductor 
(renowned vintage bandleader) 

and piano soloist UNC-Asheville Music Faculty, 

The concert will present two pieces from the original 1924 concert - Victor Herbert's SUITE OF SERENADES and Gershwin's RHAPSODY IN BLUE. 

More importantly will be the premier of three original compositions by local jazz artists: 
Michael Jefry Stevens' CANVAS #1, 
David Wilken's SONATA #2 and 
Richard Shulman's INDIGO FANTASY.

This is an event that is not to be missed and one that won't be soon forgotten.