Friday, August 18, 2023



Music Director: Wynton Marsalis

Snow Concert Hall, Red Hill to 18 August


Reviewed by Len Power 17 August 2023


There was a great sense of excitement as the audience took their seats for this sold-out concert.  Everyone was aware that this was a rare live opportunity to see and hear these world-famous artists doing what they do best.

The Jazz at Lincoln Centre Orchestra is composed of 15 of the finest jazz soloists and ensemble players today.  They have been the resident jazz orchestra at Lincoln Centre, New York since 1988 and they perform, educate and broadcast at home and internationally.

Wynton Marsalis, trumpet player and the Music Director of the company, is the Artistic Director Of Jazz at Lincoln Centre.  Born In New Orleans, Louisiana, he began playing trumpet at age 6.  By 19, he had his own jazz band and has been touring the world ever since.  He is the only musician to win a GRAMMY Award in two categories, jazz and classical, during the same year 1983-84.

Marsalis may be famous but he took his place on stage amongst the other trumpet players, indicating that this was a true ensemble.  As Music Director, he announced the works before the orchestra played them and quickly built an intimate and warm connection with the audience with his down-to-earth manner and flashes of humour.

Wynton Marsalis

Hearing a big band live is an electrifying experience.  In the first piece, ‘Grand Central Giveaway’ by Dizzy Gillespie, the power of the trumpets together with the other instruments all but lifted you out of your seat.

The orchestra played 10 works by composers as varied as Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus, Dave Brubeck, Chick Corea, Kenny Dorham, Wayne Shorter and Dizzy Gillespie.  Various orchestra members had also provided the arrangements for several of these.  Watching and hearing these masterful players working together and improvising as a group or effortlessly taking solos was pure magic.

Jazz At Lincoln Centre Orchestra

A jazz concert like this one produces a feeling that the audience is a part of the action, not just the players. These performers’ awareness of the excited audience reaction must inform their improvising.  Jazz, like no other art form, brings people together like that.


Photos by Peter Hislop

Len Power's reviews are also broadcast on Artsound FM 92.7 in the ‘Arts Cafe’ and ‘Arts About’ programs and published in his blog 'Just Power Writing' at