World Premiere: 25th Anniversary Commission Honoring 15 KU Basketball Luminaries
In celebration of the Lied Center’s 25th Anniversary, the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis (JLCO) will premiere a new work commissioned by the Lied Center. Each of the 15 members of the JLCO will compose one movement to capture the spirit of a beloved KU basketball legend. This project represents the first time the JLCO has been commissioned to create a new work as a collective. The combination of the world’s greatest jazz orchestra with the tradition of basketball that runs so deep at the University of Kansas will result in an unforgettable performance.
The JLCO, comprising 15 of the finest jazz soloists and ensemble players today, has been the Jazz at Lincoln Center resident orchestra since 1988. Under Music Director Wynton Marsalis, the JLCO performs a vast repertoire, from rare historic compositions to Jazz at Lincoln Center-commissioned works, including compositions and arrangements by Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Fletcher Henderson, Thelonious Monk, Mary Lou Williams, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, Charles Mingus and many others. Wynton Marsalis (music director, trumpet) is the managing and artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center. Marsalis made his recording debut as a leader in 1982 and has since recorded more than 70 jazz and classical albums, which have garnered him nine Grammy Awards. In 1997, Marsalis became the first jazz artist to be awarded the prestigious Pulitzer Prize in music.
Through the generosity of private donors, each movement of the 25th Anniversary Commission is sponsored. Net proceeds of this project will help fund the Lied Center’s Performing Arts Access Endowment, which will enable every student in Lawrence Public Schools to attend a world-class, age-specific performance on an annual basis.
The 15 KU basketball legends who will be highlighted with individual movements and the corresponding movement sponsors are:
- Phog Allen – John & Rosy Elmore
- Charlie B. Black – Cathy J. Daicoff
- Mario Chalmers – Miles & Paula Schnaer
- Wilt Chamberlain – Beverly Smith Billings
- Nick Collison – Catherine Holland
- Bill Hougland – Brad & Linda Sanders
- Clyde Lovellette – Jon & Vicki Jamison
- Danny Manning – Danny & Julie Manning
- James Naismith – David Booth
- Paul Pierce – Cathy Reinhardt
- Darnell Valentine – Steve & Chris Edmonds
- Walt Wesley – Roland & Joanne Hurst
- Jo Jo White – Scott & Linda Robinson and Chris & Jane Fevurly
- Andrew Wiggins – Jeff & Mary Weinberg
- Lynette Woodard – Venkat & Neeli Bendapudi in honor of Renate Mai-Dalton