CHICAGO JAZZ ORCHESTRA
3/15 with guest vocalist
The Chicago Jazz Orchestra (CJO) celebrates and perpetuates jazz orchestra music – an original American art form – for all audiences through unique performance, collaboration, and education. The CJO strives to develop and promote an appreciation for and understanding of music for the American jazz orchestra as it was originally conceived, performed, and recorded by jazz master composers and soloists. Through collaborative efforts and partnerships, the CJO seeks to provide listening and educational opportunities in a variety of settings and formats.
The CJO is Chicago’s oldest professional jazz orchestra in continuous operation and one of the oldest jazz repertory orchestras in the country. When Jeff Lindberg and the late Steve Jensen first came up with their big band concept in 1978 (founded as the Jazz Members Big Band), they could not have predicted the remarkable metamorphosis that turned a group of first-call musicians into what is now known as the Chicago Jazz Orchestra, a 17-piece premiere jazz ensemble that has garnered both national and international recognition.
Conductor and Artistic Director Jeff Lindberg is one of the Foremost transcribers in jazz. As a result, the Orchestra’s repertoire draws upon his vast library, which includes the works of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie, Lionel Hampton, Benny Carter, Oliver Nelson, Ray Charles, and many others. The CJO also performs compositions and arrangements by members of the CJO, including Associate Artistic Director Charles Harrison.
For more than 35 years, the CJO has been at the forefront of presenting performances of classic American jazz orchestra repertoire to diverse audiences through reasonably priced programs held at a variety of venues. Always looking for new challenges – both in repertoire and stylistic choices – Jeff Lindberg has infused the Orchestra with a spirit of versatility that has made the group a favorite performer not only in jazz venues, but also for concert settings, receptions, and dances – just about anywhere that exceptional big band music can be presented. Audiences have the opportunity to hear unique musical arrangements transcribed by the CJO, and because the Orchestra has its own transcriptions of the original recordings, much of the music presented in these concerts cannot be heard anywhere else.