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Posted on April 30, 2019

For a PDF version of this press release, click here.


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JUST ANNOUNCED! @KimmelCenter 19/20 #Jazz Season features a fusion of #tradition and #innovation with genre-bending artists, #Grammy Award-winning musicians, iconic artists, and trailblazing new acts! More info @


Press Contact:

Lauren Woodard                                                             



Jessica Christopher












FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Philadelphia, PA, April 30, 2019) –– The Kimmel Center Cultural Campus announces its eclectic 2019/20 Jazz Season, featuring powerhouse collaborations, critically-acclaimed musicians, and culturally diverse masters of the craft. Offerings include a fusion of classical compositions with innovative hip-hop sounds, Grammy® Award-winning performers, plus versatile arrangements rooted in tradition. Throughout the season, the varied programming showcases the evolution of jazz – from the genre’s legendary history in Philadelphia to the groundbreaking new artists who continue to pioneer music for future generations.


The 2019/20 season will kick off on October 11 with pianist/composer hailed as “the genius of the modern piano,” Marcus Roberts & the Modern Jazz Generation, followed onOctober 27 with the Grammy® Award-winning Chick Corea Trilogy with Christian McBride and Brian Blade. The season continues with a multifarious lineup that celebrates an extensive range of jazz stylings, including genre-defying Ms. Lisa Fischer & Grand Batonperforming withThe Philadelphia Youth Orchestraon November 1;the high energy duo, Black Violin on November 8; groundbreaking quartet Béla Fleck & the Flecktones on December 3; gospel, soul, and jazz traditionalist Gregory Porter on February 10; up-and-comer and Thelonious Monk winner Jazzmeia Horn on March 14; renowned Philadelphia favorites and former Kimmel Center residency artists Ethan Lipton & His Orchestra on March 14 and Joanna Pascale on April 25; the trailblazing trumpeter and soloist Bria Skonberg on May 9; and the return of internationally-revered ensemble Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis on May 17.


“This year’s jazz season not only assembles an extraordinary level of talent for Philadelphians to experience on the Kimmel Center Cultural Campus, but also emphasizes the artistic diversity we pride ourselves on delivering to our audiences,” said Ed Cambron, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. “The lineup is stellar, from the storied Chick Corea Trilogy to rising star Jazzmeia Horn. We are also thrilled to welcome back former Kimmel Center jazz and theater residents, Joanna Pascale and Ethan Lipton, respectively, as well as returning favorites in disciplines as varied as big-band to hip-hop. There really is something for everyone!”



Ticket packages for the 2019/20 Jazz Season go on sale to the public on April 30. Packages start at $18.50 per show. Save 10% by purchasing a 3-show package or save 15% by purchasing 4 or more shows.


Ticket packages can be purchased by calling 215-893-1999, online at, or at the Kimmel Center Box Office. Group sales are available for groups of 10 or more and can be purchased by calling (215) 790-5883. More information at


A complete list of the 2019/20 Jazz Season programming can be found below:



Perelman Theater

October 11, 2019

Hailed as “the genius of the modern piano”, pianist/composer Marcus Roberts delivers a spectacular show tracing his life to date from his early roots in Jacksonville and at the Florida School for the Deaf and Blind to his remarkable career as a modern jazz musician. The Modern Jazz Generation (MJG) in 2013 was founded by Marcus along with trio members Jason Marsalis (drums) and Rodney Jordan (bass) with the goal of mentoring younger musicians and recognizing their education as a critical part of the evolution of jazz.



Verizon Hall

October 27, 2019

Chick Corea brings together bass powerhouse Christian McBride and drum master Brian Blade for a trio that earned 2 Grammy® Awards for their first outing, 2014's landmark 3-CD set Trilogy. “Both are master musicians and together we have an easy rapport," Chick says of McBride and Blade. "There is a lot of give and take in our music. It’s always a lot of fun.”



Verizon Hall

November 1, 2019

This special evening welcomes back 2018 PIFA Gala special guest Lisa Fischer and her band, Grand Baton, with musicians from the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra to perform powerful renditions of your favorite songs from Luther Vandross, Tina Turner, the Rolling Stones, and Sting, conducted by Josephine Lee. Experience a performer who the Minneapolis Star Tribune calls “addictive” and “so enriching, so exciting, so transcendent that you want more.”



Academy of Music

November 8, 2019

Black Violin is led by classically-trained string players Wil B. (viola) and Kev Marcus (violin). Joining them on stage are DJ SPS and drummer Nat Stokes. The band uses their unique blend of classical and hip-hop music to overcome stereotypes while encouraging people of all ages, races, and economic backgrounds to join together to break down cultural barriers. In the past 12 months, the band has performed for over 100,000 students in the U.S. and Europe and has partnered with Yamaha and NAMM (National Association of Music Manufactures) to continue supporting music education.



Verizon Hall

December 3, 2019

This groundbreaking, Grammy®-winning quartet features banjoist Béla Fleck; harmonica-player and keyboardist Howard Levy; bassist Victor Wooten; and percussionist/drumitarist Roy “Future Man” Wooten. Together, Béla Fleck & The Flecktones have created some of the most forward-thinking music during their long, storied career. While all manners of genres come into play – from classical and jazz to bluegrass and African music to electric blues and Eastern European folk dances – the result is an impossible-to-pigeonhole sound all their own, a meeting of musical minds that remains, as ever, utterly indescribable.



Verizon Hall

February 10, 2020

Known for his warm baritone vocals, Gregory Porter rose to acclaim in the 2010s with his earthy, cross-pollinated brand of jazz, soul, and gospel. A gifted singer of standards as well as more contemporary soul material, Porter has earned favorable comparisons to his idols Nat King Cole, Donny Hathaway, and Stevie Wonder. He announced his arrival by picking up a Grammy® nomination for his 2010 debut, Water. After signing to Blue Note, he gained even wider notice for his third album, 2013's Liquid Spirit, which hit number two on the jazz charts, and won the Grammy® for Best Jazz Vocal Album. Although his original songs are his main focus, Porter often returns to his roots, such as on his 2017 tribute album Nat King Cole & Me.



SEI Innovation Studio

March 14, 2020

The quartet Ethan Lipton & His Orchestra has been playing together since 2005 and has released four studio albums. In 2017, the band was nominated for a Lucille Lortel Award for its show The Outer Space, produced by the Public Theater in Joe’s Pub and first developed in the Kimmel Center’s Theater Residency program. The band’s earlier theatrical song cycle, “No Place to Go,” won an Obie Award and has toured the U.S. and Europe. Comprised of Eben Levy (guitar), Ian Riggs (bass), Vito Dieterle (sax), and Ethan Lipton (vocals), the band is based in New York.  NPR’s Weekend Edition called Lipton's songs “twisted, sophisticated, schleppy and sad all at once,” and New York Magazine once dubbed the band NYC’s "Best Lounge Act.”



Perelman Theater

March 14, 2020

Grammy® nominated vocalist Jazzmeia Horn has a name that speaks for itself, capturing her very essence. Since winning the Thelonious Monk Competition in 2015, Jazzmeia’s star has continued to rise, along with her reputation as an artist with an assured maturity and a vocal confidence far beyond her years. JazzTimes exclaims that Jazzmeia’s “vivacity, imagination, gutsiness and sociopolitical savvy echo the likes of Carter and Abbey Lincoln. Simply put, she is as exciting a discovery as Cécile McLorin Salvant or Gregory Porter.” Her debut album, A Social Call, was released on Concord’s Prestige label to overwhelming acclaim from critics and fans alike, earning Jazzmeia her first Grammy® nomination for Best Jazz Vocal Album.



SEI Innovation Studio

April 25, 2020

Joanna Pascale is a singer of sophisticated taste, profound expression, and raw emotion. Through her captivating music, she delivers modern interpretations of timeless standards with an intimate attention to lyric and sparkling musicality.  A Philadelphia native, Pascale held a decade-long engagement at the Loews Philadelphia, which allowed her to hone her voice, style, and vast repertoire. Her newest captivating album, Wildflower, coinciding with the end of her Loews residency, features a finely-tuned style, supported by an excellent band led by the session’s producer, pianist Orrin Evans, and a host of special guests including Christian McBride, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Gregoire Maret, Bilal, and Cyrus Chestnut. In the Kimmel Center’s Jazz Residency, Pascale, alongside Etienne Charles, created and premiered “Floriography”, a song cycle written in the tradition of the great American songbook and inspired by The Language and Poetry of Flowers, an 1847 publication on the art of floriography. Floriography is the art of using flowers to communicate emotions and sentiments without words and it became wildly popular during the Victorian era when open expression of emotions was culturally unacceptable. This project is a deeply personal and intimate exploration of a woman’s soul and psyche told through the lens of a flower.



Perelman Theater

May 9, 2020

Bria Skonberg is a trailblazing trumpeter, vocalist, and songwriter. In the last year, she has sung the music of Aretha Franklin alongside Destiny’s Child’s Michelle Williams, played with U2 at the Apollo, sat in with Dave Matthews Band, was a featured guest with Jon Batiste, and sang “The Star Spangled Banner” at Madison Square Garden. Described as “the shining hope of hot jazz’” by The New York Times, Bria has been at the forefront of a revival of classic American music channeling her hero, Louis Armstrong. She is co-founder of the popular NY Hot Jazz Festival and NY Hot Jazz Camp for adults. Lincoln Center sought out her leadership to open Midsummer’s Night Swing Series for a tribute to the first integrated all female big band, the International Sweethearts of Rhythm. In 2016, Bria released her debut LP on Sony Masterworks which won a Canadian JUNO award and made the Top 5 on Billboard jazz charts; her music has over 3.5 million streams on Spotify. She tours constantly with her NYC-based band, bringing her own signature sound of fiery trumpet playing and smoky vocals with creative concoctions of old and new.



Academy of Music

May 17, 2020

The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis (JLCO) comprises 15 of the finest jazz soloists and ensemble players today. Led by Wynton Marsalis, Jazz at Lincoln Center Managing and Artistic Director, this remarkably versatile orchestra performs a vast repertoire ranging from original compositions and Jazz at Lincoln Center-commissioned works to rare historic compositions and masterworks by Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Fletcher Henderson, Thelonious Monk, Mary Lou Williams, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, Charles Mingus, and many others.


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Kimmel Center Jazz Residency

The Kimmel Center has commissioned and premiered 13 new jazz projects involving Philadelphia musicians, poets, and dancers during the life of its 6-year Jazz Residency program. Each season, new teams, selected by an 8-person panel made up of some of this country’s most prominent jazz minds, work to create a new project that is relevant and engaging to the Philadelphia community. Successes for former Kimmel Center Jazz Residents include: a debut album entitled The Fisherman from 2016-17 resident Max Swan; a world tour with John Legend and third album for 2015-16 Jazz Resident Korey Riker; 2016-17 resident Jawanza Kobie’s Bird Stories went on to be presented by the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in May 2017 and The Mann Center in August 2017. 2017-18 resident Luke Carlos O’Reilly worked on and performed in the Hill-Freedman World Academy benefit concert with a live band in November 2018. 2016-17 resident Joanna Pascale performed her critically-acclaimed show The Language of Flowers, with unique collaborations with youth of the Sister Cities Girlchoir, at World Café Live.


Kimmel Center Theater Residency

The Kimmel Center has proudly produced various full-length works born out of its Theater Residency, a 2-week annual intensive inviting artists to gather and create new works on the Kimmel Center Cultural Campus. Partnering with The Public Theater and Joe’s Pub in New York City, the program is entering its sixth season in June 2019. Produced works include: Mary Tuonomen’s Hello Sadness!; Jamie Leonhart’s Estuary; Ethan Lipton’s The Outer Space, which then played at The Public Theater in New York City; Deb Margolin’s 8 Stops; Dito Van Reigersberg’s Martha Graham Cracker production of Lashed But Not Leashed; Courtnee Roze’s The Culture; Martha Stuckey’s Due to the Sensitive Nature; Daniel Alexander Jones’ BLACK LIGHT; and David Sweeny’s Johnny Showcase alter-ego in The Johnny Shortcake Show. Theater Residency performances on the Kimmel Center Cultural Campus during the 2018-19 season include Martha Graham Cracker’s Lashed But Not Leashed (March 14 – 16, 2019, SEI Innovation Studio) and Polly Mope (May 9 – 11, 2019, SEI Innovation Studio.)


The Kimmel Center Cultural Campus

Located in the heart of Center City, Philadelphia, our mission is to engage the region’s diverse communities with art through performance and education. Our Cultural Campus serves more than 1 million guests per year and includes the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, the Academy of Music, and the Merriam Theater- representing more than 160 years of rich history for the performing arts along Philadelphia’s Avenue of the Arts. We are home to eight esteemed Resident Companies: The Philadelphia Orchestra, Opera Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Ballet, The Philly POPS, PHILADANCO, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, and Curtis Institute of Music. With nearly 9,000 seats per night, we are the region’s most impactful performing arts center, and the second largest in the country. Our Cultural Campus serves as a preeminent and inclusive place to enjoy exceptional experiences that reflect the spirit of our region by cultivating a creative and socially-responsible environment where our community shares experiences that are delivered with pride, integrity, and respect. As a 501 c 3 nonprofit organization, we collaborate on, present, and produce a broad range of relevant and meaningful events, we serve as an active gathering space for social and community events, we educate the region’s young people through access to quality arts experiences, and we provide support to artists in the creation of new work. TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, is our proud sponsor of the Kimmel Center’s 2018-2019 Season. American Airlines is the official airline of Broadway Philadelphia. For additional information, visit


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For a PDF version of this press release, click here.

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