Sean Jones. Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Heinz Hall

June 16
8 p.m.

Looking for a terrific precursor to this year’s highly anticipated Pittsburgh JazzLive International Festival?

Ramsey Lewis_750
Ramsey Lewis. Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Before the festival heats up downtown for three days next week, head to Heinz Hall for a star studded one-night-only event celebrating Pittsburgh’s jazz legacy.

Hosted by actress and singer Gloria Reuben, the unique Pittsburgh Jazz Celebration will honor local legends and current stars and serve as the kick-off to the fifth annual JazzLive Festival.

The concert will begin with a jazz ensemble featuring Pittsburgh Jazz Legend Roger Humphries (drums), who will be joined by David Budway on piano, Joel Frahm on saxophone, Jay Ashby on trombone, Dwayne Dolphin on bass and Sean Jones on trumpet.

The second half of the concert will feature the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra—under the baton of Jeff Tyzik—performing newly arranged pieces for NEA Jazz Master Ramsey Lewis and Grammy Award-winning vocalist Kurt Elling. Featured will be works composed by Pittsburgh jazz legends such as Billy Strayhorn, George Benson, Henry Mancini and others. Pittsburgh Symphony bassist Jeff Grubbs will be the featured soloist on Ray Brown’s orchestral work, Afterthoughts.

Roger Humphries_750
Roger Humphries. Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

Throughout the production, concert-goers will also be treated to a preview of an upcoming feature-length documentary about Pittsburgh’s jazz legacy that is set to air later this year on PBS.

Immediately following the concert, a CD signing with several of the night’s featured artists will be held in the lobby of Heinz Hall.

A pre-concert gala reception at 6 p.m. will include special appearances by Pittsburgh jazz stars, live music by the Center of Life Jazz Band and tasty hors d’doueuvres.

Purchase tickets.

Read more about the Pittsburgh JazzLive International Festival here.

Jennifer BaronArts & Entertainment / Jobs Editor

Jennifer has worked at the Mattress Factory, Brooklyn Museum of Art and Dahesh Museum of Art and is co-author of Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania. She also is co-coordinator of Handmade Arcade. Musically, she is in a band called The Garment District and is a founding member of Brooklyn's The Ladybug Transistor.