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Release: Immediate

Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra Sextet spends Martin Luther King Week at UI

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Lincoln Jazz Orchestra Sextet will spend Martin Luther King Week at the University of Iowa, celebrating the jazz tradition -- one of the major international cultural contributions by Americans of African descent. The residency will conclude with a concert at 8 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 23, in Hancher Auditorium.

The concert will feature not only performances by the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra Sextet, but also by student jazz musicians from City and West High Schools in Iowa City who will work with the sextet during the week. A reception will follow the concert for all the musicians and residency participants.

The sextet -- Sioux City, Iowa, native Ryan Kisor on trumpet, Wycliffe Gordon on trombone, Wess Anderson on saxophones, Farid Barron on piano, Rodney Whitaker on bass and Herlin Riley on drums -- will perform standards by composers including Duke Ellington, Thelonious Monk and George Gershwin, as well as compositions by group members.

The public is also invited to a free " Evening of Swing," featuring the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra Sextet and Dance of Iowa on Wednesday, Jan. 20, in Old Brick, downtown Iowa City. The evening will begin at 6 p.m. with a swing dance clinic, followed at 7 p.m. with an hour-long swing dance with live music by the sextet.

A clinic with UI jazz students will be held at 9:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 21, at the Greenroom Pub, 509 S. Gilbert St. in Iowa City. The public is invited to observe, free of charge.

The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra Sextet residency is part of an ambitious, three-year, audience-development Network Project that links Hancher Auditorium, the Burlington Civic Music Association, the Center for Faith and Life at Luther College in Decorah, and the Pella Opera House. The project, which focuses primarily on developing young-adult audiences, was funded by the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund.

The sextet was in Pella and Decorah during the fall, and will go from the UI directly to a four-day residency in Burlington.

The UI residency will begin with a Jan. 20 "Jazz for Young People" matinee concert for elementary school groups in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus. On Jan. 21 and 22 members of the sextet will work with students at City and West High Schools in preparation for the Saturday concert. They will also contribute to social studies classes at the two schools.

At noon on Jan. 20 the sextet will visit Rockwell Collins in Coralville for a mini-concert and a question-and-answer session for Rockwell Collins employees.

Hancher Circle contributors will be treated to performance with commentary on Jan. 22 at the UI Levitt Center.

The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra Sextet is an educational touring ensemble drawn from Wynton Marsalis' Jazz at Lincoln Center roster. The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra reinvigorates the big-band tradition by interpreting historic compositions and spearheads its future by commissioning new work from current innovators.

The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra has presented several concerts in Hancher Auditorium during recent seasons, including a performance of Marsalis' Pulitzer Prize-winning jazz oratorio, "Blood on the Fields." Marsalis and the full orchestra will return April 15 for a concert celebrating the Duke Ellington centennial.

The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra Sextet residency at the UI has additional support from the General Mills Foundation, through the University of Iowa Foundation.

Tickets for the Jan. 23 concert are $5 ($3 for UI students, senior citizens and young people 17 and younger) from the Hancher box office.

Hancher box office hours are 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and 1-3 p.m. Sunday. From the local calling area or outside Iowa, dial (319) 335-1160. Long distance within Iowa and western Illinois is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284. Orders may be charged to VISA, MasterCard or American Express. UI students may charge their purchases to their university bills, and UI faculty and staff may select the option of payroll deduction.

People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary services should dial (319) 335-1158. This number will be answered by box office personnel prepared to offer assistance with handicapped parking, wheelchair access and seating, hearing augmentation and other services. The line is equipped with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.

For information on UI arts events, visit on the World Wide Web.

For additional information about the residency activities, contact Hancher's education coordinator, Michelle Coleman, at (319) 335-0009.