Monday, December 9, 2013

South Florida Jazz Presents Cyrus Chestnut Trio with Special Guest Guitarist Russell Malone in Concert December 14th, 2013

Cyrus Chestnut Trio
with Special Guest
Guitarist Russell Malone

Saturday, December 14, 2013 ~ 8pm

South Florida JAZZ presents the exhilarating pianist Cyrus Chestnut who will appear with his trio augmented by special guest on guitar, Russell Malone. While both artists have busy and very successful solo careers, they occasionally come together for special performances bringing their unique gospel and blues-infused influences in a blend with hard-swinging uplifting jazz. This is the first Florida engagement for this particular aggregation.

Pre-concert musical entertainment to be provided in the courtyard from 7:00 – 7:45 PM by the WDNA Jazz Encounters Bootcamp Ensemble, comprised of area student-musicians, age 11-17, under the direction and tutelage of South Florida musician-educator Nicole Yarling.

South Florida’s premier modern jazz organization is thrilled to present Cyrus Chestnut Trio with Special Guest Russell Malone on Saturday, December 14, 2013, 8:00 PM. This concert will take place at the Rose and Alfred Miniaci Performing Arts Center on the Nova Southeastern University campus, 3100 Ray Ferrero, Jr Blvd, Davie 33314. Tickets are $40 ($15 for students) and can be purchased from the Broward Center box office by calling 954.462.0222, option #4 in Broward; or online at

Virtuosic and playful are terms that best describe pianist Cyrus Chestnut. His approach is simultaneously hard-swinging and soulful, blending contemporary and more traditional jazz with the gospel music of his upbringing, creating a blues-inflected iconic, personal sound. 

Cyrus was born into a family very much involved with church music. His father played the organ and his mother directed the choir in the Baltimore Calvary Baptist Church. Cyrus was doodling on the piano at three and his father gave him introductory lessons before age six. His potential was obvious and he studied classical piano at the esteemed Peabody Institute’s preparatory program by age nine. His proclivities took him to Boston’s Berklee College of Music where he earned a degree in jazz composition and arranging while being awarded distinguished fellowships in three consecutive years.

Before embarking on a solo career about 20 years ago, Cyrus paid his dues as a sideman with high-profile artists Jon Hendricks, Donald Harrison, Wynton Marsalis, and perhaps most influentially, the intense and demanding singer Betty Carter, where every night was a trial by fire for all of her musicians, especially the pianists. In addition to the small combo gigs, Cyrus Chestnut’s rhythm section leadership and his prowess as a soloist resulted in first-call pianist status in larger the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra and the Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra.

For several years, Russell Malone has been one of the most commanding guitarists on the scene. Growing up in Georgia he was involved first in gospel music but he quickly discovered George Benson, Wes Montgomery and Charlie Christian and found himself playing in the jazz cauldron that was organist Jimmy Smith’s band. moving from jazz to blues, gospel and pop without hesitation, a rare facility that has made him first-call for Diana Krall, Gladys Knight, Aretha Franklin, B.B King, Natalie Cole, David Sanborn, Shirley Horn, Christina Aguilera, Harry Connick, Jr, Ron Carter, and Sonny Rollins. That certainly is versatility. His sound is warm He was self-taught and influenced primarily by He was a bebop guitarist from the outset and achieved acclaim playing with organist Jimmy Smith

Cyrus Chestnut – piano
Russell Malone - guitar
Eric Wheeler - acoustic bass
Evan Sherman - drums

South Florida JAZZ, in its 22nd year, as the principal purveyors of modern jazz in the region since 1992, formally announces its new season schedule. All eight performances will be held at the Rose & Alfred Miniaci Performing Arts Center, 3100 Ray Ferrero, Jr Blvd on the Nova Southeastern University campus in Davie. The focus of the organization remains steadfastly on presenting artists of national and international repute under the aegis of Artistic Director Ron Weber and the world-acclaimed vibraphonist/educator Gary Burton, Artistic Advisor, who believe this lineup is potentially the strongest in the organization’s history.
Tickets to all concerts can be purchased from the Broward Center box office at 954-462-0222; toll-free at 877-311-SHOW, online at or
Tickets: $40; students $15; $300 eight-concert subscription
All seating is reserved
Free parking courtesy of South Florida JAZZ

2014 Concerts

January 11, 2014 – KENNY GARRETT QUINTET
Over the course of a stellar career that has spanned more than 30 years, Kenny Garrett has become the preeminent alto saxophonist of his generation. Well known for his time with Miles Davis, Garrett brings an intense, melodic, and distinctive sound to each musical situation. The quintet has just released its second acclaimed recording in as many years, Pushing The World Away.

February 8, 2014 – JEFF BERLIN TRIO with Richard Drexler and Mike Clark
A virtuoso of the electric bass, Jeff Berlin is considered to be amongst the finest bass guitarist soloists in the world. His current trio is remarkable in its versatility with noted drummer Mike Clark (from Herbie Hancock’s Headhunters band) and pianist-bassist Richard Drexler. This band really must be seen to be believed!

Will Calhoun won two Grammy Awards and became famous as a drummer of the rock group Living Colour. Will returns to his jazz roots with his core trio that features the virtuosic bassist Charnett Moffett and keyboard star, Marc Cary, augmented by tenor saxophone rising star Marcus Strickland and trumpeter Brian Lynch – all big dawgs in the jazz scene and it shows in this energetic band.

April 12, 2014 – BRAD MEHLDAU TRIO
One of the most lyrical and intimate voices of contemporary jazz piano, Brad Mehldau has forged a unique path, which embodies the essence of jazz exploration, classical romanticism, and pop allure. With his trio featuring bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jeff Ballard, he is now amongst the most famous and regarded fixtures in modern music with supreme confidence in his deconstruction of varied source material.

May 10, 2014 – DIANE SCHUUR
Vocalist Diane Schuur has built a stellar career by embracing not only traditional modern jazz repertoire and the American Songbook, but also contemporary pop and even some country music with her distinctively jazz flavoring. Her various collaborations have resulted in numerous #1 Billboard chart ratings and two Grammys in five nominations. Deedles’ multi-octave voice, to say the very least, is unique.

Grammy Award winner Christian McBride, who comes from the Ray Brown tradition, is a chameleonic virtuoso both of the acoustic and electric bass, stands tall among his peers, doing things that never have been done on the instrument before. His trio that features emerging stars, pianist Christian Sands, and drummer Ulysses Owens, Jr, is dazzling!

Funding for this organization is provided in part by the Broward County Board of Commissioners as recommended by the Broward Cultural Council
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