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Groton Hill Big Band: “Swingin’ with the Duke”

Thursday, December 21, 2023 —  7:30 pm
Jazz in The Concert Hall

A Holiday Jazz Concert… with a twist!

Jerry Sabatini, band leader

Swing into the holidays with Duke Ellington’s famous jazz interpretation of Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker Suite,” arranged by Ellington and Billy Strayhorn. Introduced in 1960 as a hit album, the suite features Sugar Rum Cherry (Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy), Danse of the Floreadores (Waltz of the Flowers), Arabesque Cookie (Arabian Dance), and more. The concert will also include other season favorites arranged for Big Band.

About Director Jerry Sabatini & the Groton Hill Big Band

Jerry Sabatini is recognized in the Boston jazz scene as an adventurous, creative and diverse trumpet player, improviser, composer, and educator. Known for his wide range of musical tastes, Jerry performs in projects ranging from traditional jazz and Balkan brass bands to the music of the Middle and Far East and the avant garde. He has worked with many great New England bands, such as The Boston Jazz Composer’s Alliance, The Makanda Project, Garrison Fewell’s Variable Density Orchestra, Mehmet Sanlikol’s Dunya, The Revolutionary Snake Ensemble, and Charlie Kohlhase’s Explorers Club. Jerry has shared the stage with numerous musicians, including Oliver Lake, John Tchicai, Fred Frith, Elliot Sharp, Anthony Coleman, Erkan Oğur, and Charles Neville. He also leads, composes and arranges repertoire for an instrumental octet, Sonic Explorers, which has released five albums on Nada Brahma Records, their own independent label. Jerry has been recognized as a finalist in the Massachusetts Cultural Commission’s Music Composition Awards for his quintet works for Sonic Explorers’ 2007 release, Lore of the Land, and has been commissioned for original modern big band and jazz combo works. Jerry is also a frequent clinician and conductor at New England universities and high schools.

Formed in 1998, the Groton Hill Big Band performs America’s greatest music at venues throughout Greater Boston, including fundraisers, community gatherings, town celebrations, and Independence Day festivities. Several of the players are active professional musicians from the local area who perform regularly with orchestras, chorales, musical theater organizations, ethnic music ensembles, and other jazz groups. Many of them performed in college big bands, including MIT’s Festival Jazz Band and bands at Tufts, Indiana University, Dartmouth College, Oberlin College, SUNY Oswego, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute. While most of the band members have active professional careers outside of music, they continue to perform for the pleasure of making good music and keeping the flame of big band jazz alive.

Our home was built for sound, with 2 world-class stages on 110 acres, comfortable seating, unforgettable views, and ample free parking.
Enjoy on-site dining in the Woodland Room, or bar service in our spacious lobby before most shows!
Just 15 minutes from Rt 495 in beautiful Groton, MA, home to incredible dining, lodging, hiking, and history.