San Francisco to Grand Rapids: St. Cecilia hosts SFJAZZ Collective 

SF Jazz Collective photographed in San Francisco in 2015. (Supplied St. Cecilia/Jay Blakesberg

By St. Cecilia Music Center


St. Cecilia Music Center will bring eight of the best jazz musicians from around the world to the Royce Auditorium stage on May 4. The SFJazz Collective is an all-star ensemble, that changes each season and is comprised of the finest performers/composers at work in jazz today.


SFJAZZ artists appearing at St. Cecilia include Miguel Zenon, alto saxophone; David Sanchez, tenor saxophone; Sean Jones, trumpet; Robin Eubank, trombone; Warren Wolf, vibraphone; Edward Simon, piano; Matt Penman, bass, and Obed Calvaire, drums.


The eight will perform the Collective’s arrangements of the music of Miles Davis as well as their own fresh compositions.



“If you are a jazz lover, this is the performance not to miss,” Cathy Holbrook, St. Cecilia executive director. “An eight-piece band made up of eight of the most talented jazz performers on the jazz scene today will culminate in an exciting night for everyone who is in the audience.”


The SFJAZZ Collective’s mission each year is to perform fresh arrangements of works by a modern master and newly commissioned pieces by each Collective member. More than any other figure, Miles Davis changed the sound of jazz — not once, but consistently over his career — from the birth of bebop in the 1940s to the integration of rock that gave rise to the fusion movement in the 1970’s.


In addition to its outstanding line-up with a leaderless format, the SFJAZZ Collective has also been praised for the innovative approach to repertoire. Through the pioneering approach of simultaneously honoring jazz’s recent history while championing the music’s up-to-the-minute directions, the Collective embodies SFJAZZ’s commitment to jazz as a living, ever-relevant art form.


As soloists, composers, and bandleaders, the SFJAZZ Collective represents what’s happening now in jazz. They also demonstrate that jazz has truly become an international language. Hailing from Ohio, Baltimore, Miami, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, and New Zealand, the Collective’s multi-cultural lineup mirrors the explosion of jazz talent around the globe.


However, the jazz community only reached its current state by maintaining its traditions while simultaneously embracing innovation. This, too, is the essence of the SFJAZZ Collective. These exceptional artists come together in the name of jazz as a constantly evolving, quintessentially modern music.


A pre-concert wine and hors d’oeuvres reception for $15 per person is also optional when purchasing tickets for this event.  There will be a a post-concert “Meet-the-artists” reception with all ticket-holders will be held giving the audience the opportunity to meet members of SFJazz and to obtain signed CDs of their music including their newest release.


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