Berklee Beantown Jazz FestivalA Night of Two Pianos

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Friday / September 28, 2012 / 7:30 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue

The Berklee Beantown Jazz Festival opening night concert features Geri Allen and Joanne Brackeen with special guests Tia Fuller, John Lockwood, Terri Lyne Carrington, and more.

Two female piano powerhouses, Geri Allen and Joanne Brackeen, join forces on stage to present a once-in-a-lifetime performance sure to pique the interests of both piano enthusiasts and jazz fans alike. Allen, known for embodying both tradition and innovation in jazz is described by Rolling Stone as "the finest pianist of her generation," and Brackeen, a creative and whimsical musician whom Tony Bennett describes as "a visionary of extraordinary depth," will showcase their contrasting styles in a program of duets as well as solo pieces. Special guests will include Terri Lyne Carrington, Tia Fuller, and John Lockwood. 

Geri Allen is an American composer, educator, and jazz pianist raised in Detroit, Michigan and educated in the Detroit Public Schools. Allen has worked with many of the greats of modern music, including Ornette Coleman, Ron Carter, Ravi Coltrane, Tony Williams, Dave Holland, Jack DeJohnette, Betty Carter, and Charles Lloyd. She cites her primary influences to be her parents, Mount Vernell Allen Jr. and Barbara Jean Allen, and her primary musical influences to be mentors Marcus Belgrave, Donald Waldon, and Betty Carter, as well as pianists Herbie Hancock, Mary Lou Williams, Hank Jones, Alice Coltrane, Cecil Taylor, Thelonious Monk, McCoy Tyner, Bud Powell, and Dr. Billy Taylor.

Joanne Brackeen is an American jazz pianist and composer born in the coastal city of Ventura, California. She has been showered with nearly every honor available to a jazz musician. She received two grants from the National Endowment of the Arts, as well as State Department sponsorship for a mid-'80s tour of the Middle East and Europe. She was included in the Ken Burns TV documentary Jazz, as well as Robert L. Doerschuk's 88 Giants of Jazz Piano (Huiksi, 2001). She has received a Berklee Award for Outstanding Achievement in Education, an IAJE Outstanding Educator Award, the Living Legend Award from IWJ (International Women in Jazz), and the ABI award for Woman of the Year 2001. She twice served on the NEA Grant panel and has adjudicated for Chamber Music America, as well as the Jacksonville and Dewars' Piano Competitions. 

Can't make it to the show? The event will stream live on Concert Window.

$25, $20, reserved seating