Press Release: Celebrity Series of Boston Presents Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis Buddy Rich Centennial: Celebrating the Jazz Drum

Sunday, April 9, 2017, 5pm — Symphony Hall

For Immediate Release
Contact: Stephanie Janes PR, (617) 419-0445,
JLCO high-res photo | Ali Jackson high-res photos | JLCO Video Preview
Celebrity Series Press Room

Wynton Marsalis

(Boston) Celebrity Series of Boston will present Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis in their program Buddy Rich Centennial: Celebrating the Jazz Drum on Sunday, April 9, 2017, at 5pm at Symphony Hall, 301 Gainsborough Street, Boston, MA. This performance is generously sponsored by The D.L. Saunders Real Estate Corp.

Tickets start at $35, and are available online at, by calling CelebrityCharge at (617) 482-6661 Monday-Friday 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m., or at Symphony Hall’s Hall Box Office, 301 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA.

The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra was first presented by the Celebrity Series of Boston in October 1992, and has appeared on the series thirteen times since, most recently in November 2015. Trumpeter Wynton Marsalis made his debut on the Series as featured soloist with the Eastman Wind Ensemble in March 1987 and has also been presented as headliner with septet (November 1993), quartet (April 2004), and sextet (October 2005). He also performed with his father, Ellis, and brothers Branford, Delfeayo, and Jason on a program billed as “Ellis Marsalis & Sons” in March 2003.

Drummer Ali Jackson will propel the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis in a virtuosic display of big band drums and rhythm. Jackson will arrange the music of Buddy Rich, an innovative big band genius who would have turned 100 this year. Rich was a renowned musical powerhouse for most of the 20th century, influencing generations and offering a visceral excitement that few drummers could capture. For the program’s second half, audiences will witness the Boston premiere of Jackson’s Living Grooves: A World in Jazz Rhythm, an extended piece written in the innovative spirit of drum greats like Rich.

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra

The members of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra are 15 of the best soloists, ensemble players, and arrangers in jazz. This remarkably versatile band celebrates jazz’s large-ensemble tradition by performing a vast repertoire of masterpieces by legends of the genre, including Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Fletcher Henderson, Thelonious Monk, Mary Lou Williams, Billy Strayhorn, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, Charles Mingus, Chick Corea, Oliver Nelson, and many others, as well as original works and arrangements. The JLCO has performed collaborations with many of the world’s leading symphony orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, the Russian National Orchestra, the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, the Boston, Chicago and London Symphony Orchestras, the Orchestra Esperimentale in São Paolo, Brazil, and others.

Wynton Marsalis is the managing and artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center and a world-renowned trumpeter and composer. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1961, Marsalis began his classical training on trumpet at age 12, entered The Juilliard School at age 17, and then joined Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers. He made his recording debut as a leader in 1982, and has since recorded more than 60 jazz and classical recordings, which have won him nine GRAMMY Awards. In 1983 he became the first and only artist to win both classical and jazz GRAMMYs in the same year and repeated this feat in 1984. Marsalis is also an internationally respected teacher and spokesman for music education, and has received honorary doctorates from dozens of U.S. universities and colleges. He has written six books; his most recent are Squeak, Rumble, Whomp! Whomp! Whomp!, illustrated by Paul Rogers and published by Candlewick Press in 2012, and Moving to Higher Ground: How Jazz Can Change Your Life with Geoffrey C. Ward, published by Random House in 2008.

In 1997 Marsalis became the first jazz artist to be awarded the prestigious Pulitzer Prize in music for his oratorio Blood on the Fields, which was commissioned by Jazz at Lincoln Center. In 2001 he was appointed Messenger of Peace by Mr. Kofi Annan, Secretary-General of the United Nations, and he has also been designated cultural ambassador to the United States of America by the U.S. State Department through their CultureConnect program. Marsalis was instrumental in the Higher Ground Hurricane Relief concert, produced by Jazz at Lincoln Center. The event raised more than $3 million for the Higher Ground Relief Fund to benefit the musicians, music industry-related enterprises, and other individuals and entities from the areas in Greater New Orleans who were impacted by Hurricane Katrina. Marsalis helped lead the effort to construct Jazz at Lincoln Center’s home – Frederick P. Rose Hall – the first education, performance, and broadcast facility devoted to jazz, which opened in October 2004.

Ali Jackson

Ali Jackson (Drums) developed his talent on drums at an early age. In 1993 he graduated from Cass Tech High School and in 1998 was the recipient of Michigan’s prestigious Artserv Emerging Artist award. As a child, he was selected as the soloist for the “Beacons Of Jazz” concert which honored legend Max Roach at New School Jazz at Lincoln Center University. After earning an undergraduate degree in music composition at the New School University for Contemporary Music, he studied under Elvin Jones and Max Roach. Jackson has been part of Young Audiences, a program that educates New York City youth on jazz. He has performed and recorded with artists including Wynton Marsalis, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Aretha Franklin, George Benson, Harry Connick, Jr., KRS-1, Marcus Roberts, Joshua Redman, Vinx, Seito Kinen Orchestra conductor Seiji Ozawa, Diana Krall, and the New York City Ballet.

His production skills can be heard on George Benson’s GRP release Irreplaceable. Jackson is also featured on the Wynton Marsalis Quartet recordings The Magic Hour (Blue Note, 2004), and From the Plantation to the Penitentiary (Blue Note, 2007). Jackson collaborated with jazz greats Cyrus Chestnut, Reginald Veal, and James Carter on Gold Sounds (Brown Brothers, 2005) that transformed songs by indie alternative rock band Pavement into unique virtuosic interpretations with the attitude of the church and juke joint. He has been a member of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra since 2005. Jackson currently performs with the Wynton Marsalis Quintet, Horns in the Hood, and leads the Ali Jackson Quartet. He also hosted “Jammin’ with Jackson,” a series for young musicians at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Dizzy Club Coca-Cola. He is also the voice of “Duck Ellington,” a character in the Penguin book series Baby Loves Jazz that was released in 2006.


About Celebrity Series of Boston

Celebrity Series of Boston was founded in 1938 by pianist and impresario Aaron Richmond. Over the course of its 78-year history, Celebrity Series has presented an array of the world’s greatest performing artists, including Sergei Rachmaninoff, Arturo Toscanini, Ignace Paderewski, Artur Rubenstein, Vladimir Horowitz, Glenn Gould, Fritz Kreisler, Jascha Heifetz, Isaac Stern, Andrés Segovia, Kirsten Flagstad, Marian Anderson, Luciano Pavarotti, Béla Bartók, Igor Stravinsky, Martha Graham, Ballet Russe De Monte Carlo, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Mstislav Rostropovich, and the New York City Opera Company.

The Celebrity Series has been bringing the very best performers–from orchestras and chamber ensembles, vocal and piano music, to dance companies, jazz, and more–to Boston’s major concert halls for 78 years. The Celebrity Series of Boston believes in the power of excellence and innovation in the performing arts to enrich life experiences, transform lives and build better communities. Through its education initiatives, the Celebrity Series seeks to build a community of Greater Boston where the performing arts are a valued, lifelong, shared experience–on stages, in schools, at home– everywhere.

The Celebrity Series of Boston, Inc. receives generous support from Amy & Joshua Boger, the Barr Foundation, Leslie & Howard Appleby, the Boston Cultural Council, The Boston Foundation, the Stephanie L. Brown Foundation, Charlesbank Capital Partners LLC, the Susanne Marcus Collins Foundation, Deloitte LLP, Donna & Mike Egan, Foley & Lardner LLP, Gabor Garai & Susan Pravda, David & Harriet Griesinger, Zachary Haroutunian and the Garbis & Arminé Barsoumian Charitable Foundation, Paul L. King, the Liberty Mutual Foundation, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Joseph McNay, the National Endowment for the Arts, the New England Foundation for the Arts, Eleanor & Frank Pao, The Peabody Foundation, PTC, the Cynthia and John S. Reed Foundation, the Royal Little Family Foundation, the Stifler Family Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Henri A. Termeer, Michael and Susan Thonis, Tufts Health Plan, Sanjay & Sangeeta Verma, Nancy Richmond Winsten, Anonymous, and many others.


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