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Jazz Evening Highlights the Music of Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn


By Joan Yonkler

To celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of the San Miguel Jazz & Blues Festival, there will be a concert Friday, September 27 at St Paul’s Church that will be dedicated solely to the music of two of the greatest jazz composers of the twentieth century, Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn.

These two artists were chosen due to extraordinary response from the audience that attended our sold-out concert last January that featured the music of Duke Ellington. The audience loved the music so much, that they asked us to play more songs by Ellington, which led us to include his collaboration with Strayhorn.

Ellington was already famous for his great band and his musical compositions when he brought Strayhorn into his organization. Strayhorn was a young, very talented pianist, trained in classical music, who not only played piano for Ellington when Ellington wasn’t playing but also composed some of the most famous songs associated with the organization. “Take the A Train,” was actually written by Strayhorn. Some of Strayhorn’s other famous compositions are “Lush Life,” “A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing,” and “Something to Live For.”

Gabriel Hernández has performed at international jazz festivals, where he shared the stage with Herbie Hancock, Chucho Valdez, Tito Puente, and Dizzy Gillespie and toured with the trumpeter Roy Hargrove. He toured around the world with the Afro-Cuban All-Star Orchestra.

You already know Bobby Kapp. He was one of ten finalists at the Thelonius Monk International Voice Competition. He was a Jazz Ambassador for the US State Department in countries all over Africa and Europe. He has played with Gato Barbieri, Dave Burrell, Dexter Gordon, and Dave Liebman, among others.

Bassist Antonio Lozoya has performed in festivals in México, Cuba, and the US. He has accompanied many jazz greats such as Bob Sheppard, Paul McCandless, and Dave Pike and great singers such as Karrin Allyson, Lila Downs, and Magos Herrera. He is the director of the International Jazz and Blues Festival of San Miguel de Allende.

Born in New York City, Joan Yonkler has been performing for the San Miguel Jazz and Blues concert series for several years. She has also performed at Blues Alley in Washington, DC, Bethesda Jazz and Blues Club in Maryland, Laporta’s in Alexandria, Virginia, and at jazz clubs in Rome, Italy and New York City. She recently performed Strayhorn’s music at the Tompkins Square Public Library in the East Village of Manhattan.

We are thrilled to present the San Miguel Jazz Festival XXV edition 2019. For five days the city will host national and international artists from around the world.

Buy San Miguel Jazz Festival 2019 full-season tickets and get an eco-bag and T-shirt of your choice. Merchandise will be delivered when you collect your tickets at the theater box office.

See you there!


XXV International Jazz and Blues Festival presents

The Music of Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn

St Paul’s Church

Fri, Sep 27, 6pm

400 pesos and 300 pesos

Sale at:

“Solutions,” Recreo 11



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