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MGC Jazz Presents The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra Jazz Beyond Borders

MCG Jazz is pleased to announce a special engagement featuring The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra (SJMO), the 19-piece big band orchestra in-residence at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, in Chicago on Thursday, March 14, 2019. In partnership with the Jazz Institute of Chicago, the performance will take place at the Studebaker Theater, 410 S. Michigan Ave, at 7:30 p.m.NEA Jazz Master and internationally-renowned flutist Hubert Laws will join the SJMO, under the direction of artistic director Charlie Young, for a one-of-a-kind concert experience at Studebaker Theater to present a collection of music ranging from historic Duke Ellington arrangements from the Smithsonian archives to new compositions and new arrangements for Jazz orchestra of classic Hubert Laws compositions.

“We are thrilled to bring the SJMO to the city of Chicago,” said Young, adding “We are creating a bespoke concert tailored to the community. Jazz bridges cultures and promotes democracy, cultural diversity and innovation and through authentic collaboration, we create something much greater than the sum of its parts.”“It is an honor to partner with the Smithsonian and SJMO who understand the role of this important American icon that we call Jazz, “says Heather Ireland Robinson, Executive Director of Jazz Institute of Chicago. “We are further glad to host NEA Jazz Master Hubert Laws in Chicago. ”The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra was founded in 1990 with an appropriation from the U.S. Congress in recognition of the importance of Jazz in American culture and its status as a national treasure. A cornerstone of the Smithsonian’s commitment to Jazz, the SJMO, led by Conductor and Artistic Director Charlie Young, has performed for audiences across the United States, Canada, Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Its concerts, by the full orchestra and smaller groups, include transcribed works, as well as new arrangements, commissioned works and programs that illuminate the contributions of small ensembles and Jazz masters who contributed to the development of American Jazz and defined the music’s character. Information about the SJMO is available at And more information about Hubert Laws can be found here.

The Jazz Institute of Chicago Celebrates 50 Years: With a 50-year history of nurturing and promoting Jazz in all its forms through concerts, public events and educational programming, the JIC will celebrate this golden anniversary throughout 2019 with a year-long celebration of Jazz music. Our goal is to reach the minds and hearts and souls of as many as possible with special concerts, a Jazz film festival, a listening and speakers series, family programming, art exhibitions, a house+Jazz dance party and a weekend-long birthday bash at the Logan Center for the Arts that showcases the diversity of Jazz and our community, our cultural partners and the foundations upon which the organization has grown. For more information on our programs, visit

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