[Dixielandjazz] Lincoln Center Update

Stephen G Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Wed Mar 18 08:22:00 PDT 2009

Excerpted from the NY Times today. Not the piano focus which includes  
Fats Waller and Count Basie programs. Also note the downturn in ticket  
sales for Lincoln Center programs over the past few months, and the  
loss of Cadillac as a major program sponsor. Hard times.
Steve Barbone

March 18, 2009 - NY TIMES - By Ben Ratliff
A Jazz Season Lineup With a Focus on Piano

Wynton Marsalis, the artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center,  
plans to announce the organization’s 2009-10 season Wednesday with a  
lineup that includes a season-opening Rose Hall performance by Ornette  
Coleman and his band on Sept. 26; programs built around the work of  
Bill Evans, Mary Lou Williams, Fats Waller and Count Basie; and  
concerts with diverse themes, including 1960s soul-jazz and the  
Brazilian jazz composer Moacir Santos, who died in 2006.

The season, which will be outlined on jalc.org, is not being promoted  
around a single instrument, artist or style, as in some previous  
years. But in an interview last week, Mr. Marsalis called it “our year  
of the piano,” pointing to not only the Williams, Waller, Evans and  
Basie shows, but also to concerts based on music by Herbie Hancock,  
Marcus Roberts and Horace Silver. . . .

.Jazz at Lincoln Center’s programming schedule — including its  
ambitious educational elements — has typically expanded annually, but  
because of the economic downturn, this season’s number of events has  
remained about the same as last year, Mr. Marsalis said. A more  
noticeable development is the increase in concerts with musical  
direction from outside the organization or from members of the Jazz at  
Lincoln Center Orchestra, suggesting a gradual loosening of Mr.  
Marsalis’s grip on the programming of individual shows. . . .

The organization has suffered from the economic crisis. Ticket sales  
for its two concert halls (excluding the nightclub Dizzy’s Club Coca- 
Cola) fell precipitously in October and November. Now, even after an  
uptick, the year’s current average for ticket sales per show is down  
about 10 percent from last year’s total average, said Adrian Ellis,  
executive director of Jazz at Lincoln Center. And Cadillac, for three  
years the major automotive sponsor for concerts at Rose Hall, withdrew  
its mid-six-figure sponsorship late last year because of its own  
financial issues.

Mr. Ellis added that the institution was seeking another automotive  
sponsor but that its financial support would be carried on by a spread  
of corporations, foundations and individuals. Its revenues include  
State Department grants for tours, income from rentals of its concert  
halls, and National Endowment for the Arts support.

Mr. Ellis and Mr. Marsalis also discussed imminent plans for making  
much of the organization’s 23 years of concerts available for purchase  

“We have to be intelligent in everything we do,” Mr. Marsalis said.  
“We need to get deeper into our vision and our mission. Let’s do what  
we have to do to ride out this storm.”

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