A Special Black-History Month Mid-Day Art Break Concert with Ethnic Heritage Ensemble on Monday, February 20, 2017

Introducing a special February Mid-Day Art Break on President’s Day, Monday, February 20 at from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. for a fiery lunch break of jazz on the Museum’s stage. Admission is free, suggested donation $15.

Comprised of internationally renowned percussionist Kahil El’ Zabar with Corey Wilkes, on trumpet and Alex Harding on baritone sax; the trio seamlessly combines the ancient rhythms of the past with new frontiers of improvisation. A fanfare of colors, sounds and rhythmical hipness, a performance by the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble is a celebration of deep jazz. They consider themselves next level Sound Scientists, who have mastered rituals in music like no one else — that raise consciousness while healing the mind, body, and spirit.

Mike West of the Washington Post writes, “[Kahil El’ Zabar] comports himself with tremendous dignity and restraint between his tunes, then during performance unleashes a spiritual fervor. His manner as a musician… is raw, primal and open, in a way that never ceases to startle… As fervent as El’Zabar could be, there wasn’t a moment of his performance that didn’t feel like a meditation — or a communication with a higher power. For this writer, born too late to see the great spiritualist John Coltrane, it’s as close as jazz comes to a religious experience.”

Kahil El’Zabar is considered by his peers to be one of the most prolific innovators of his generation. He has recorded more than sixty well-received projects, and won numerous international awards as a musician and composer. In 2014, Dr. El’Zabar was knighted by the Counsel General of France, and christened as a “Chevalier Medal of Letters”. In 2012, President Barack Obama’s administration awarded him the International Ambassador’s Award in the Arts. In 2006, The Chicago Tribune named Kahil El’Zabar Chicagoan of the Year. Kahil has worked with such luminaries as Dizzy Gillespie, Cannonball Adderley, Stevie Wonder, Donnie Hathaway, Pharoah Sanders, Neneh Cherry, Nina Simone, and Ntozake Shange.

 Corey Wilkes has established himself as one of the best improvising trumpeters in the modern era where he approaches mainstream jazz standards with maturity and his deep appreciation of hip-hop. Corey has shared the stage with numerous jazz masters including; Wynton Marsalis, Roy Hargrove, James Moody, and Kurt Elling.

Alex Harding is considered one of the top baritone players in New York City. He has been a fixture on the New York jazz scene since 1993 performing touring and recording with the Julius Hemphill Saxophone Sextet, Hamiett Bluiett Baritone Nation, David Murray Big Band, Oliver Lake Big Band, Craig Harris, Joseph Bowie’s defunkt, Aretha Franklin, David Lee Roth, Lester Bowie, and the Tony award-winning Broadway show Fela!

The Ethnic Heritage Ensemble’s annual Black History Month tour will take them to Seattle, Denver, Detroit, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Ottowa, Montreal, Rochester, NYC, and Erie.

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