Jewel of the Ridge Jazz Festival
Posted on April 3rd, 2014 by Bev Hendricks
Internationally known jazz artists will perform free concerts during the first annual Jewel of the Ridge Jazz Festival on April 9-12, 2014. Presented by Polk State College and the Lake Wales Arts Council, the Festival will feature John Abercrombie, Randy Corinthian, T FOXX and Orquesta Aragon, along with Lake Wales jazz artists Charlie “Topp” Hines and Victoria de Lissovoy at the Polk State Lake Wales Arts Center and Polk State JD Alexander Center. Chalet Suzanne and other restaurants will provide food for sale.
April is Jazz Appreciation month, and the inaugural Jewel of the Ridge Jazz Festival will make for an experience unlike any other in Polk County. It’s going to feel like visiting a jazz club on the West coast or in New York.
It’s a rare opportunity to enjoy internationally acclaimed talent — for free. Jewel of the Ridge takes place April 9-12.
John Abercrombie, an accomplished jazz guitarist known for experimenting with instruments and unexpected collaborators, whose career spans more than 40 years and includes nearly 50 albums.
The Randy Corinthian Quartet, led by saxophonist Randy Corinthian, who first performed at Polk State in December. Corinthian trained at Florida A&M and Florida State and has shared the stage with such jazz greats as Ellis Marsalis.
Encore performances by the Randy Corinthian Quartet and John Abercrombie.
Jazz guitarist Willie J. Thompson III (also known as TFOXX) 40-year career includes performances with Chubby Checker and pre-show performances for George Benson and B.B. King. Orquesta Aragón, a famed Cuban ensemble that has been performing since 1939, including New York City’s Carnegie Hall. Orquesta Aragón’s distinctive sound derives from a front line of flutes and violins as well as its rhythm section.
Victoria de Lissovoy Ensemble, comprised of popular local talents, including de Lissovoy, jazz pianist and vocalist; Tom Carabasi, drummer; Alvon Griffin, percussionist; David McKenzie, saxophonist; and Jay Mueller, bassist. Charlie “Topp” Hines, another local talent, who honed his trumpeting skills at Boston’s Berklee College of Music and in 1978 earned an induction into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame. Encore performance by Orquestra Aragón.
Complementing the musical entertainment will be a reception and exhibit by Gary Gessford, a Mulberry-based painter, at 5 p.m. on April 10 at the Polk State Lake Wales Arts Center. All events are free, open to the public, and family-friendly. Food vendors, including Chalet Suzanne, will be on-site.
The Polk State JD Alexander Center is located at 152 E. Central Ave. and the Polk State Lake Wales Arts Center is located at 1099 State Road 60 East.
April 10, 5pm Reception & Exhibit RSVP: Email LWAC@polk.edu or phone 863-298-6883