Music lovers are in for a real treat when renowned jazz saxophonist Virginia Mayhew joins Dr. Gregg Gelb and the Heart of Carolina Jazz Orchestra for a special concert Saturday, Feb. 16 at 7:30 p.m. at the Halle Cultural Arts Center in Apex.
Tickets are $12 and are available at the Halle Cultural Center 919-249-1120.
In addition, on Saturday afternoon, Feb. 16, Mayhew will offer a free master class (younger players welcome) from 5:00 until 6:00 pm.
All About Jazz.com says “Who’s this Virginia Mayhew woman anyway, Dexter Gordon’s daughter? Sonny Rollins’ niece? She plays the saxophone like a blood relative of those two giants.”
The saxophonist, composer and arranger has been an active participant in the New York jazz scene since 1987, leading her own groups (quartets, quintets and a septet) for over 25 years. She is also the saxophonist, musical director and assistant arranger of the Duke Ellington Legacy, an 8-piece group founded by Edward Ellington and Gaye Ellington, two of Duke Ellington’s grandchildren.
In the course of her career, Mayhew has worked with such renowned artists as Earl “Fatha” Hines, Cab Calloway, Frank Zappa, James Brown, Norman Simmons, Al Grey, Junior Mance, Toshiko Akiyoshi, Doc Cheatham, Joe Williams, Leon Parker, Clark Terry, Kenny Barron, Chico O’Farrill, Ingrid Jensen, Claudio Roditi, Nnenna Freelon, and many, many others.
Mayhew has appeared in most of New York City’s major jazz venues (including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Town Hall, Jazz Standard, Blue Note, Sweet Basil, and Smalls) and performed throughout the United States, Europe, the Newly Independent States, the Caribbean, Bermuda, Australia, and Southeast Asia. She has also been featured as a leader at many jazz festivals, both within the United States and abroad, and has traveled twice as a representative of the United States as a Jazz Ambassador (in the tradition of Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington), once to the Newly Independent States and a second time to Southeast Asia.
In addition to her recordings with others, Mayhew has, as a leader, six releases, all of which have received rave reviews and lots of airplay. Her CD,”Mary Lou Williams:The Next 100 Years,” was cited as one of the “best CDs of 2012” by Downbeat.