By Robert D. Thomas
Pasadena Star-News/San Gabriel Valley Tribune/Whittier Daily
When Rachael Worby announced her new project, Muse-ique, last summer she promised a
much different style of programming than the standard orchestra, Pops or
otherwise. Tuesday night at 7 p.m., that difference shows up in a major way as
Worby hosts Grammy Award-winning trumpeter Arturo Sandoval in a program
entitled “An Intimate Conversation.” Moreover, as Worby promised, the venue is
an attraction in itself.
Since Worby’s skill as a raconteur sets her apart from most
conductors working today, this pairing of the ebullient maestra and the iconic
Sandoval talking about Latin jazz seems tailor-made, at least on paper (or, in
this case, computer screen). The event is at the Pasadena Rose Palace (the Los
Angeles Rock Ballroom) and the evening includes a pre-event reception and a
behind-the-scenes look at the construction of floats being created by Phoenix
Decorating for the upcoming Tournament of Roses Parade.
Sandoval, who turns 62 next month,
was born in and grew up in Cuba. Nonetheless, his early influences were jazz
legends Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Clifford Brown but he studied
classical trumpet at Cuba’s National School of the Arts and has performed with
the BBC Symphony and Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) Philharmonic. He was
granted political asylum in the United States in 1990 and became a naturalized
U.S. citizen in 1999.
However, it is for Latin jazz that
Sandoval is best known. Among other things, he has won four Grammy Awards, six
Billboard Awards and an Emmy Award — the latter for his composing work on HBO
movie based on his life, For Love or
Country, starring Andy Garcia. Information:
If the $45 ticket price is too rich for your blood or you
just want something different, check out Alex Benestelli’s Master of Music
choral recital on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. It’s free and at Pasadena Presbyterian
Church (double disclaimer: Alex is a friend and colleague and PPC is my church
home). Benestelli, who is also an organist, will conduct a choral ensemble of
colleagues from the USC Flora L. Thornton School of Music in music by J.S.
Bach, Edgar Bainton, Bobby McFerrin, Ralph Vaughan Williams and others. Timothy
Howard will accompany on the church’s splendid Aeolian-Skinner pipe organ.
(c) Copyright 2011, Robert D. Thomas. All rights reserved.
Portions may be quoted with attribution.