Jazz At Lincoln Center Celebrates Tony Bennett And Bill Charlap

Arts & Celebrities

Jazz at Lincoln Center celebrates the late singer Tony Bennett and jazz pianist Bill Charlap at its annual gala.

The gala, which will take place on April 17, will feature a concert celebrating Bennett's music that will be hosted by Josh Groban and presented by the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis. Performers will include vocalists Rubén Blades, Bernadette Peters, Kristin Chenoweth, Norm Lewis, Kurt Elling, Ekep Nkweelle, Robbie Lee and Shenel Johns; pianist Charlap; and tap dancer Jared Grimes

Songs may include “The Best Is Yet To Come,” “Watch What Happens,” “I Get Along Without You Very Well,” “I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” “It Amazes Me,” and “All the Things You Are”. .”

Bennett, who was also a painter, died last July.

The gala will also honor Grammy Award-winning pianist Charlap with his Award for Artistic Excellence. Calling him “one of the world's leading jazz pianists,” Jazz at Lincoln Center said Charlap “has produced concerts for performing arts organizations across the country and, from 2004-2023, served as artistic director of the New York City Jazz in July festival at 92NY Through his mentorship and service as Director of Jazz Studies at William Paterson University in Wayne, New Jersey since 2015, Charlap exemplifies the commitment to education and the jazz tradition”.

Jazz at Lincoln Center will also present its Ed Bradley Award for Jazz Leadership to Tim Jackson, former artistic director of the Monterey Jazz Festival, and Randall Kline, founder of SFJAZZ.

The concert will be broadcast live on April 17 and will be available on demand until April 23 on the orchestra's Jazz Live app.

Speaking to Forbes.com last week, Charlap said he was “very good friends” with Bennett “for over thirty years.”

“Over the years, from time to time we did various things together, private parties, special projects,” he explained. They also recorded together, including the 2015 album, “The Silver Lining: The Songs of Jerome Kern,” with Charlap's wife, jazz pianist Renee Rosnes, and the other two members of his current trio, Peter Washington on bass and Kenny Washington. to the drums This album won a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album.

Speaking of their recording sessions, Charlap said, “Tony just goes in and does it.”

She also called him a “very accomplished painter,” an ability, Charlap said, “informed the way he sang.” Bennett, he added, “was a great communicator.”

Charlap owns the sketches Bennett did of him and his trio, as well as a pastel he did that illustrates the cover of Charlap's current trio's first album.

Charlap also said he was “very touched and overwhelmed” to be honored by Jazz at Lincoln Center.

“It's really nice to witness people you respect,” he added.

Charlap, who was the opening act at Dizzy's Club at Jazz at Lincoln Center when it originally opened, said he and Marsalis are “dear friends. I feel very close to the organization. I think they are champions “.

Blue Note Records will release a new album with Charlap's trio later this summer.


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