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Luna Stage Jazzes Up the Arts Scene in the Oranges

Friday, October 18, 2013 • 5:15pm

WEST ORANGE, NJ - A very different theatrical experience unfolds during Music in the Moonlight Jazz Series at Luna Stage starting Sunday, Oct. 27 at 7 p.m. Pianist Brandon McCune sets the sound of the season in a tribute to Mulgrew Miller – influential jazz icon, teacher, mentor and Memphis music legend.

Marking the first of five jazz concerts, sponsored by CityScience.org, performances boast an array of jazz artists performing a wide variety of styles that highlight the culture of the genre.

Accompanying McCune in both of their second appearances at the venue, located at 555 Valley Road in West Orange, drummer Cecil Brooks III keeps beat while bassist Ameen Saleem feels the rhythm. For his third consecutive year, Sanford Josephson, jazz historian, curates the event.

Mark Ruffin, program director from Real Jazz on SiriusXM Radio, described Luna Stage’s premiere performer McCune as “one of the top players to come out of the post-‘young lions’ period,” – a jazz-inspired movement initiated in the 1980s by Grammy award-winning Wynton Marsalis.

McCune and the late Miller – contributing artist in more than 400 recordings according to JazzTimes’ – made a habit of playing piano through early morning hours during collaborations at Miller’s house. Miller, who died this past May, left an impact on McCune – and the jazz genre. In an article about his life and influential career, The New York Times used the words “impeccable” and “dynamic” to describe several of Miller’s most recent albums released in the last decade.

To purchase tickets, on sale now, call (973) 395-5551, visit www.lunastage.org or the box office in person. Ticket prices range from $18 in advance to $20 at the door. Full season subscriptions for all five concerts are also for $75. For more information on the Music in the Moonlight Jazz Series and all events and programs at Luna Stage, visit www.lunastage.org.

2013-14 Music in the Moonlight Jazz Series Full Schedule:

  • October 27 - Brandon McCune Trio
    Tribute to Mulgrew Miller
  • December 8 - Virginia Mayhew
    Tenor saxophonist pays tribute to Mary Lou Williams
  • February 16 - Sarah Partridge
    “I’ll Take Romance,” Jazz Valentines from critically acclaimed vocalist
  • March 9 - Eric Olsen & Lou Camiano
    Pianist and alto saxophonist fuse classical music and jazz
  • April 27 - Bob DeVos & Oscar Perez
    Virtuoso guitarist and pianist play classic jazz with a Latin beat
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