Pioneer Valley Jazz Shares in partnership with the Amherst College Music Department present the Wadada Leo Smith / Angelica Sanchez Duo.
Pianist Angelica Sanchez is one of the foremost improvisers in jazz. Since moving from Arizona to the East Coast in 1994, Sanchez has collaborated with Paul Motian, Richard Davis, Jamaladeen Tacuma, Nicole Mitchell, Rob Mazurek, Tim Berne, Mario Pavone and Ben Monder. She leads numerous groups including her Nonet. Her Quintet recording, "Wires & Moss," and her duo with Wadada Leo Smith, Twine Forest," were each voted one of the best releases of 2012 and 2013, respectively, in The New York City Jazz Record. Her piano duo with Marilyn Crispell, "How to Turn the Moon," was voted one of the top 50 best recordings in NPR's 2020 critics' poll. Her latest trio recording with Michael Formanek and Billy Hart, "Sparkle Beings," was voted one of the top 10 recordings of 2022 in The New York Times. Angelica Sanchez has a master's degree in arranging from William Paterson University. She is currently on faculty at Bard College.
Trumpeter and composer Wadada Leo Smith has been a member of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) for five decades. Smith’s notational system for improvisation in an ensemble context, which he calls Ankhrasmation, has been critical to his music and work as an educator and ensemble leader. His music philosophy is detailed in his book notes (8 pieces), source a new world music: creative music, first published in 1973. From 1994 to 2013, Smith was on the faculty of the Herb Alpert School of Music at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), where he was the director of the African American Improvisational Music program. He has an honorary doctorate from CalArts. Smith’s honors include the Mohn Career Achievement Award for Made in L.A. 2016 at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, and a Doris Duke Artist Award (2016). He was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Music (2013). In DownBeat’s 2017 Critics Poll, he placed first in the categories of Jazz Artist, Trumpet and Jazz Album (America’s National Parks).
Admission is free with Amherst College ID (no advance tickets required). Otherwise, advanced tickets ($15) and information are available JazzShares.org and at the door beginning at 6:30 p.m.