Alton Jazz & Wine Festival plays Saturday at Argosy
Officials announced Thursday that the Alton Jazz & Wine Festival venue has been shifted to Argosy Casino because of threats of rain.
The event will start at 4 p.m. Saturday. Previously, it has been planned for the nearby Liberty Bank Alton Amphitheater.
“The show will go on, just a few hundred yards down the riverfront from the Liberty Bank Amphitheater. In light of so many outdoor events being canceled, we are pleased this event will take place without fear of any impact from mother nature,” said Robert Stephan, Alton Amphitheater Commission chairman.
Trumpet player Terell Stafford; high school jazz musicians who comprise the Jazz St. Louis All Stars; St. Louis’ own Jim Manley Quintet; and Miss Jubilee & the Humdingers are on the bill.
Admission to the event is free, although a VIP experience is available which includes VIP parking, drink vouchers, reserved seats and access to VIP tent. VIP tickets are 2 for $25 or 1 for $15. Tickets are available at the Alton Visitor Center, 200 Piasa St., Argosy Casino Alton or at Metrotix.com. Special Premier Jazz Club Table Seating is also available with tickets $50 per person or $90 for two. Those tickets are only available at the Alton Visitor Center.
The jazz festival was created as a salute to jazz legend Miles Davis who was born in Alton in 1926. A bronze statue honoring Davis stands on Third Street in Alton. It is one of three Miles Davis statues in the world and the only one on the North American continent.
“We wanted to create a festival along the Mississippi River that honors Miles Davis and gives people the opportunity to hear some top jazz performers,” said Brett Stawar, a member of the Jazz and Wine Festival committee. “This is an event that will grow and we hope can become a signature jazz festival in the region.”
A variety of wine and food, to match the talent on stage, will be available for sale at concession stands at the event.
National jazz musician Terell Stafford has been hailed as one of the “great players of our time.” He combines a deep love of melody with his own brand of spirited and adventurous lyricism. His expressive and well defined musical talent allows him to dance in and around the rich trumpet tradition of his predecessors while making his own inroads. He will play with a quintet of accomplished jazz musicians who are also educators, composters, arrangers and band leaders.
The Jazz St. Louis All-Stars are some of the top high school musicians in the St. Louis Region. The members are student musicians who take part in an afterschool program. More than 120 student musicians audition for the group. This year a total of 57 students were selected. Led by Southern Illinois University Edwardsville director of jazz studies, Jason Swagler, the Jazz St. Louis All-Stars have performed all over the region. They have also shared the stage with Terell Stafford, Stefon Harris, Antonio Hart and Tim Warfield.
Miss Jubilee has been entertaining audiences in St. Louis and beyond since 2007 and is a favorite regional jazz performer. Led by powerhouse vocalist Valerie Kirchhoff, Miss Jubilee plays an energetic blend of Hot Jazz, Hokum, and Low-down Blues from the ’20s and ’30s. Their one-of-a-kind repertoire draws heavily from the bluesy and swingin’ sounds of St. Louis and Chicago’s south side. Fueled by a hard driving rhythm section, gutbucket horns and Valerie’s engaging and magnetic performance style, Miss Jubilee shares a commitment to presenting rare and lesser known songs.
The Jim Manley Quintet features Jim Manley a trumpet player, composer, arranger and clinician in the St. Louis region. He has spent more than 7,500 nights playing his trumpet around St. Louis since the 1970s. In the last few years, he has branched out as a band leader, composer and clinician and has been a guest soloist with school bands across the country. He has opened for legendary jazz musician Maynard Ferguson and was a featured soloist at the annual Trumpet Party in Amsterdam.
For more information on the Alton Jazz & Wine Festival, visit: www.libertybankamphitheater.com