Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra Plays Ellington’s Nutcracker Suite, Copland’s Appalachian Spring

October 24, 2012 — Coral Gables, FL — Terence Blanchard, artistic director of the Henry Mancini Institute at the University of Miami Frost School of Music, announces the Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra will present a dance-inspired program featuring Duke Ellington’s “Nutcracker Suite” at 8:00 p.m. on Friday, November 30 at UM Gusman Concert Hall, 1314 Miller Drive, Coral Gables, Florida. The work is an upbeat multi-movement jazz interpretation of “The Nutcracker” by Tchaikovsky, created in 1960 by Duke Ellington and his musical collaborator Billy Strayhorn.

Entitled TERENCE BLANCHARD PRESENTS: A CONCERT OF AMERICAN MUSIC, the program will also feature Aaron Copland’s beloved “Appalachian Spring,” a ballet suite for 13 instruments inspired by ballet music that Copland composed for famed dancer and choreographer Martha Graham in 1944; plus two world premieres by Henry Mancini Composition Fellows, David Pegel (“The Pilgrim”) and Rafael da Lima de Piccolotto (“Asa, Zóio e Matulão”) that utilize the same instrumentation as Copland’s classic work.

Terence Blanchard will host a pre-concert talk at 7:15 p.m. for young people involved in the institute’s community outreach program, HMI Outbound. Scott Flavin, resident conductor of the Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra and Stephen Guerra, managing director of the Henry Mancini Institute, will conduct the concert.

Tickets are general admission and priced at $15 for adults/$10 for seniors and children, and are on sale now via the Frost School’s website http://www.music.miami.edu/concerts, or by phone at 305-284-2400.

About the Henry Mancini Institute
The prestigious Henry Mancini Institute at the University of Miami Frost School of Music is training a new generation of orchestral and jazz artists to create and perform in mixed-genre, collaborative settings. Its student musicians are introduced to a wide range of styles from classical, jazz, rock, hip-hop, Afro-Cuban, Latin, Asian and other world music. Real-world opportunities prepare them for the changing world of music they are about to enter, such as performing and recording the music of iconic film composers, and multi-media recording for television specials.
The Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra is comprised of a full orchestra (strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion), plus an additional complement of jazz instruments (saxophones, trombones, trumpets), world percussion and rhythm section instruments (piano, bass, drums, guitar). The ensemble also performs in smaller chamber music configurations throughout the year.
Graduate students who participate in the program are recruited to become “Mancini Fellows,” receiving free graduate tuition from the University of Miami and financial stipends that are funded through private donations.

The Henry Mancini Institute is the recipient of a John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Arts Challenge grant, with matching funding from the Mancini Family and UM trustee and business leader Adrienne Arsht.

About Artistic Director Terence Blanchard
Five time Grammy Award winning jazz trumpeter and film composer Terence Blanchard is Artistic Director of the Henry Mancini Institute (HMI). Blanchard has established himself as one of the most influential jazz musicians and film score masters of his generation, a member of a jazz legacy that has shaped the contours of modern jazz today. With more than 29 albums to his credit, as a musician Blanchard is a multi-Grammy Award winner and nominee, winning last year for “Best Jazz Instrumental Solo” for his performance on Jeff “Tain” Watts’ project, “Watts.” In 2009, Blanchard won for his instrumental solo for “Be-Bop” on Live At The 2007 Monterey Jazz Festival. In addition to receiving the award, Blanchard performed live on the telecast along with other New Orleans artists including Lil’ Wayne, Allen Toussaint and the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, who were all joined on-stage by singer Robin Thicke. In 2008, Blanchard also won a Grammy for his CD, A Tale of God's Will (A Requiem for Katrina), a beautifully haunting and impassioned song cycle about Hurricane Katrina and the ravages incurred upon the City of New Orleans and its residents.

As a film composer, Blanchard has more than 50 scores to his credit and received a Golden Globe nomination for Spike Lee's 25th Hour. In 2009, Blanchard loaned his musical voice to Louis the Alligator in The Princess and the Frog and completed the score for Lee's Miracle at St. Anna, as well as the soundtrack for Darnell Martin’s Cadillac Records. He received widespread critical acclaim for his recent scores for two Broadway plays, The Mother------ with the Hat, produced by Scott Rudin (“The Social Network” and “True Grit”) and A Streetcar Named Desire; and Blanchard’s composing talents were once again highlighted in the George Lucas’ film about the Tuskegee Airmen entitled, Red Tails. Blanchard is currently at work on a commission for the Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Champion, to premiere in 2013.

About the Frost School of Music
The Phillip and Patricia Frost School of Music is one of two schools created in 1926 when the University of Miami was founded. With over 700 students and 100 faculty, it is one of the largest and best music schools located in a private university in the U.S., and one of the most comprehensive in all of higher education. The naming gift from Dr. Phillip and Patricia Frost in 2003 was one of the historic highlights in the life of the School.

The mission of the Frost School of Music is to foster musical leadership by providing an innovative, relevant, and inspiring education; advance performance, creativity and scholarship; and enrich the world community with meaningful outreach and brilliant cultural offerings.

The Frost School has pioneered new curricula and was the first in the nation to offer professionally accredited Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Music Business and Music Engineering Technology, was among the first to offer degrees in Music Therapy, and Studio Music and Jazz. Renowned for its Instrumental Performance programs, it is the home of the Frost Chamber Orchestra, Frost Symphony Orchestra, and Frost Concert Jazz Band and is a leader in vocal training with the Frost Opera Theater, Frost Chorale and other notable choirs.

Frost is the exclusive home of the Frost Experiential Music Curriculum which fully integrates performance, music history, ear training, and composition through chamber music and skills ensembles; the Henry Mancini Institute which provides students with cross-genre performance opportunities in real-world professional settings; the Stamps Family Distinguished Visitors Series which brings free music master classes and lectures to the community; and the Bruce Hornsby Creative American Music Program which develops the creative skills of talented young artist/songwriters by immersing them in the diverse traditions of American songwriting.

Share it with others
« Back to Frost News Releases Archive
News story figure

Terence Blanchard Presents "A Concert of American Music" on November 30 featuring the Henry Mancini Institute Orchestra