Over the years, Jazz at LACMA has had the great honor to present musicians who have been named an NEA Jazz Master—the highest honor our nation bestows on jazz artists. From Wayne Shorter to Hubert Laws to Kenny Burrell, Jazz at LACMA has presented these esteemed L.A.-based jazz masters for over two decades.
On April 26, we open the 28th season of Jazz at LACMA with another NEA Jazz Master, composer and arranger Bill Holman. With a career that spans nearly seven decades, Holman has written for the Stan Kenton Orchestra, Charlie Barbet Band, Peggy Lee, Michael Buble, and the Metropole Orchestra, along with countless film, television, and recording projects. Holman was a key player in the West Coast jazz sound, writing for such legendary groups as Shorty Rogers, Ella Fitzgerald, The Tonight Show Band, J.J. Johnson, Jack Sheldon, Anita O'Day, June Christy, and the Lighthouse All-Stars.
I can think of no other ensemble that captures the history of jazz in Los Angeles better than Bill Holman and his Big Band and at 93 years young, I am thrilled he is starting our 2019 Jazz at LACMA season on such a high note.
Holman will be leading his Bill Holman Big Band, a 17-piece band that features some of L.A.'s finest jazz soloists and is one of the longest running jazz ensembles—started in the 1950s and continuing to this day.
Highlighted performances this season include Billy Childs, m-Pact, Paulette McWilliams, Ernie Watts, and Cannonball/Coltrane Project, among others.
Jazz at LACMA is presented Friday evenings from April to November outdoors on the Smidt Welcome Plaza.