Saxophonist Bobby Watson Joins the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra in "An Evening with Bobby Watson" on Tuesday, January 21, 2014 at 8 PM in Juilliard's Peter Jay Sharp Theater


Concert Features Bobby Watsons' "Horizon Reassembled," "Conservation," and "The Gates BBQ Suite"

Start Date

Friday, December 20, 2013

Press Release Images

Bobby Watson (Photo By Lafiya Watson)
Bobby Watson (Photo By Lafiya Watson)


On Tuesday, January 21, 2014 at 8 PM in Juilliard’s Peter Jay Sharp Theater, special guest, saxophonist and composer Bobby Watson, joins the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra, conducted by James Burton, III, in “An Evening with Bobby Watson.” Bobby Watson has performed with Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, drummers Max Roach and Louis Hayes, saxophonists George Coleman and Branford Marsalis, multi-instrumentalist Sam Rivers, and trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, and also served in a supporting role for a number of singers, including Joe Williams, Dianne Reeves, Lou Rawls, Betty Carter, and Carmen Lundy.

The program features music by Bobby Watson and includes: Horizon Reassembled; Conservation; and The Gates’ BBQ Suite: May I Help You; Beef on Bun; Heavy on the Sauce; Blues for Ollie; The President’s Tray (for Obama); One Minute Too Late; and Wilke’s BBQ.

Juilliard Jazz Orchestra members are saxophonists Braxton Cook, Jordan Pettay, Dean Tsur, Julian Lee, and Anthony Orji; trumpeters Enrique Sanchez, Joseph Boga, Jon Challoner, and Nathan Sparks; trombonists Andrew Clausen, Kyle Johnson, Kalia Vandever, and Matthew Musselman; vibraphonist Joseph Doubleday; guitarist Lake Jiroudek; pianist Jahaan Sweet; bassist Devin Starks; and drummer Douglas Marriner.

Tickets for the January 21 concert are FREE and will be available on January 7 at the Janet and Leonard Kramer Box Office at Juilliard. For further information, call (212) 769-7406 or go to www.juilliard.edu/springjazz.

The final Juilliard Jazz Orchestra concert takes place on Wednesday, February 26 at 8 PM in Juilliard’s Peter Jay Sharp Theater. (Program to be announced.) Tickets for the February 26 concert are FREE and will be available on February 12 at the Juilliard Box Office.

About Bobby Watson

A saxophonist, composer, arranger, and educator, Bobby Watson grew up in Kansas City, Kansas. He trained formally at the University of Miami. After graduating, he proceeded to earn his ‘doctorate” – on the bandstand – as musical director of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers. The group, created in 1955, by the late legendary drummer who died in 1990, showcased a rotating cast of players. After completing a four-year-plus Jazz Messengers tenure (1977-1981) that incorporated more than a dozen recordings, Watson became a much sought-after musician, working along the way with a potpourri of notable artists including drummers Max Roach and Louis Hayes, fellow saxophonists George Coleman and a younger Branford Marsalis, celebrated multi-instrumentalist Sam Rivers, and trumpeter Wynton Marsalis. He served in a supporting role for a number of vocalists including Joe Williams, Dianne Reeves, Lou Rawls, Betty Carter, and Carmen Lundy. Bobby Watson has issued some 30 recordings as a leader and appeared on 100-plus other recordings, performing as either co-leader or in support of other like-minded musicians. Not simply a performer, the saxophonist has recorded more than 100 original compositions including the soundtrack of A Bronx Tale, which marked Robert DeNiro’s 1993 directorial debut. Many of Watson’s compositions have become classics, such as his Time Will Tell, In Case You Missed It, and Wheel Within a Wheel.

About James Burton, III

New York-based trombonist James Burton, III is quickly earning a reputation as one of the most sought-after performers/educators in the jazz community. Mentored by jazz luminaries Jackie McLean and Curtis Fuller, Mr. Burton has performed and/or recorded alongside many great jazz artists, the likes of which include Illinois Jacquet, Gerald Wilson, James Moody, Frank Wess, Benny Golson, Jimmy Heath, Slide Hampton, Ron Carter, Joe Chambers, Charles Tolliver, and Christian McBride. Mr. Burton has also performed with the Ray Charles Orchestra, the Duke Ellington Orchestra, the Count Basie Orchestra, the Lionel Hampton Orchestra, the Dizzy Gillespie All Star Big Band, the Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra, and the Roy Hargrove Big Band. Formerly the director of Jazz Studies at Snow College, he is currently professor of jazz theory and applied jazz trombone at The Juilliard School, as well as conductor of the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra. Mr. Burton is trombonist and associate conductor for the Jazz at Lincoln Center All-Star Orchestra, which is now on Broadway in the new show about the golden age of Harlem, After Midnight.

About Juilliard Jazz

Juilliard Jazz is one of the newest programs of performance education inaugurated by The Juilliard School. Founded in 2001, Juilliard Jazz offers degrees at bachelor, master, and artist diploma levels. The curriculum combines tailored studio and coursework with professional performance opportunities designed to successfully integrate students into a thriving jazz environment. In addition, its faculty and students conduct national and international master classes and clinics.

In 2012-2013, Juilliard Jazz welcomed five special guest artists: pianist Paulo Braga from Brazil; Memphis jazz musicians, saxophonist George Coleman and pianist Harold Mabern; saxophonist/clarinetist Paquito D’Rivera; and trombonist Wycliffe Gordon, who was artist-in-residence for the season. Summer 2013 took Juilliard Jazz to Aiken, South Carolina; San Jose, California; West Palm Beach, Florida; Atlanta, Georgia; Melbourne, Australia; Ephraim, Utah at Snow College; and Kanagawa, Japan for summer jazz camps.

Highlights from the 2011-2012 season included a tribute concert to legendary bassist Ron Carter in March 2012 with guest artists: Benny Golson, Herbie Hancock, Jim Hall, Hubert Laws, and Christian McBride; and concerts during the season with guest artists, trombonist Wycliffe Gordon; singer Jane Monheit with the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra performing music from the American Songbook; saxophonist Joe Lovano with the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra; and Gary Smulyan in “The Music of Gerry Mulligan” with the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra.

Today, the Juilliard Jazz Orchestra and its ensembles play more than 50 performances annually including appearances at the Detroit Jazz Festival and New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, and tour to destinations, such as Costa Rica, Colombia, Japan, and Brazil. Juilliard Jazz Ensembles perform regularly at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola and the world-renowned Blue Note in New York City. For the past several seasons they also have enjoyed week-long runs at Jazz at Lincoln Center with guest artists such as Ernie Andrews, Kenny Barron, Tom Harrell, Sean Jones, Lew Tabackin, Gerald Wilson, Bobby Watson, Frank Wess, and others.

These talented Juilliard artists are taught by today’s most active, innovative, and respected jazz musicians. The experienced Juilliard Jazz faculty combines a remarkable variety of technical and musical skill, as demonstrated on stages and in recording studios worldwide.

The Juilliard Jazz Quartet, its faculty ensemble, features Juilliard Jazz Artistic Director, drummer Carl Allen, saxophonist Ron Blake, bassist Ron Carter, and pianist Frank Kimbrough.                                        

About Carl Allen, Artistic Director of Juilliard Jazz

With more than 200 recordings to his credit, the gifted Milwaukee-born, New York-based drummer, sideman, bandleader, entrepreneur, and educator, Carl Allen’s profound and propulsive percolations provided soulful and syncopated support for more than three decades.

Born in 1961, Mr. Allen grew up on gospel, R&B, and funk, but later turned to jazz after hearing an LP by saxophonist Benny Carter. He studied with drum instructor Roy Sneider and band director Robert Siemele. His first hometown gigs were with sax greats Sonny Stitt and James Moody. He studied at the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay from 1979 to 1981, and transferred to William Paterson College in New Jersey, where he graduated in 1983 with a bachelor of music degree in Jazz Studies and Performance. Mr. Allen joined trumpeter Freddie Hubbard a year before his graduation, served as his Musical Director for eight years, and made many recordings with the trumpeter including Double Take and Life Flight.

Mr. Allen has also played with Michael Brecker, Randy Brecker, Jennifer Holliday, J.J. Johnson, Sammy Davis Jr., Branford Marsalis, Kenny Garrett, Lena Horne, Ruth Brown, Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Bobby Hutcherson, Mike Stern, Nellie McKay, Phil Woods, Benny Green, Cyrus Chestnut, Joe Henderson, Billy Childs, and many others. Mr. Allen’s sideman discography also includes Jackie McLean (Dynasty), Donald Harrison (Indian Blues, Noveau Swing), Donald Byrd (A City Called Heaven), and Art Farmer (The Company I Keep).

Dreamboat, released in 1988, was Mr. Allen’s first CD as leader, followed by Piccadilly Square, The Pursuer, Testimonial, and Get Ready, his 2007 Mack Avenue debut release with bassist Rodney Whitaker. Mr. Allen was again joined by Mr. Whitaker for a second album, Work to Do.

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014, 8 PM, Peter Jay Sharp Theater

“An Evening with Bobby Watson”

Guest Artist: Saxophonist Bobby Watson

Juilliard Jazz Orchestra

James Burton, III, conductor


All Music by Bobby Watson

-Horizon Reassembled


-The Gates BBQ Suite:

1. May I Help You

II. Beef on Bun

III. Heavy on the Sauce

IV. Blues for Ollie

V. The President’s Tray (for Obama)

VI. One Minute Too Late

VII. Wilke’s BBQ


Juilliard Jazz Orchestra

Saxophones: Braxton Cook, Jordan Pettay, Dean Tsur, Julian Lee, Anthony Orji

Trumpets: Enrique Sanchez, Joseph Boga, Jon Challoner, Nathan Sparks

Trombones: Andrew Clausen, Kyle Johnson, Kalia Vandever, Matthew Musselman

Joseph Doubleday, vibraphone

Lake Jiroudek, guitar

Jahaan Sweet, piano

Devin Stark, bass

Douglas Marriner, drums


Tickets for the January 21 concert are FREE and will be available on January 7 at the Janet and Leonard Kramer Box Office at Juilliard. For further information, call (212) 769-7406 or go to www.juilliard.edu/springjazz.