Experience the Transformative Power of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band
Be immersed in holiday Creole culture with food and music at Mercyhurst
TUESDAY, NOV. 28
The folks at the Mercyhurst Institute for Arts and Culture (MIAC) are ushering in the holiday season by hosting a festive, jazzy Creole celebration — bringing the New Orleans sound up north a thousand miles or so for a Big Easy evening with the legendary Preservation Hall Jazz Band. In addition to enjoying an evening of toe-tapping holiday favorites with a Creole twist, MIAC is taking the experience one step further and offering a pre-show dinner featuring a huge menu of traditional New Orleans cuisine.
The Preservation Hall Jazz Band was originally formed in 1961 by tuba player Allan Jaffe with the intention to preserve New Orleans' musical heritage and provide an outlet for veteran musicians to play. Today the same group is run by Jaffe's son, tuba player Ben Jaffe, who is truly following in his father's footsteps in his mission to honor the city's jazz legacy. Since the band's inception, they have garnered worldwide recognition, and are continuing to stay relevant throughout generations. They have recorded and/or shared the stage with huge names in music like Allen Toussaint, the Foo Fighters, Tom Waits, Yasiin Bey (Mos Def), Dr. John, My Morning Jacket, Beck, and many others.
Jaffe comments on their recent tour: "Touring is a part of our ritual. It's our tradition. When my parents began touring with the band in the early '60s, they brought something that most people didn't even know existed to stages all over the world. It was this magnificent revelation to people that something so beautiful could even exist. People come to Preservation Hall and have transformative experiences, and that's part of our mission: to go out in the world and make that experience available to people."
The show coming to the Mary D'Angelo stage is entitled Creole Christmas and will feature a stewed gumbo of New Orleans' holiday classics: a mix of blues, jazz, and ragtime. Selections will include "Swinging in a Winter Wonderland," "Bells Will Be Ringin'," and other favorites from the band's vast repertoire.
Brett Johnson, artistic director of MIAC, comments, "The Preservation Hall Jazz Band is a musical institution that has preserved, invigorated, and redefined New Orleans music for more than 60 years. We're honored to be a stop on the band's Creole Christmas tour and excited to ring in the holidays with some of New Orleans' best-loved holiday selections."
If you'd like to be one of the 100 guests to attend the pre-show dinner (beginning at 5:30 p.m. the night of the show) featuring New Orleans cuisine served buffet style, tickets are $40 and can be purchased (separately from concert tickets) by visiting miac.universitytickets.com.
7:30 p.m. // Mary D'Angelo Performing Arts Center, 501 E. 38th St. // $20-$45 // Tickets and info: miac.mercyhurst.edu