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Website for composer/pianist Neal Kirkwood

News Archive 2009/10/11

12.18.11 - Neal Kirkwood and Friends at 3rd Street Music School

Neal Kirkwood and friends will be performing at the Third Street Music School Settlement, Friday January 20th at 7 pm (please note the early start time) They will be premiering a new work of Kirkwood's, Dance Suite for 7 Musicians.The performers are Jimmy Cozier, alto sax and flute; Rob Sudduth, tenor sax and bass clarinet; Curtis Fowlkes, trombone; Diana Herold, percussion; Lindsey Horner, bass; Lieven Venken, drums, and Neal Kirkwood, piano. There will also be some solo piano and trio music.

Third Street Music School is at 235 E. 11th St. near 2nd Ave. Absolutely free! Hope to see you there.

05.10.11 - Neal Kirkwood Trio at the Rhythm in the Kitchen Festival, May 27th

I’ll be playing with my trio on Friday, May 27th at 7 PM as the opening performance for the “Rhythm in the Kitchen" Music Festival. Hope to see you there.

Neal Kirkwood Trio: Neal Kirkwood, piano; Lindsey Horner, bass; Sunny Jain, drums

The Fifth Annual “Rhythm in the Kitchen" Music Festival

Friday, May 27th, Saturday, May 28th 2011
The Church for All Nations
417 West 57th Street
(between. 9th and 10th Avenue)

03.05.11 - Neal Kirkwood Trio at 3rd Street Music School, March 18th, 7:30 pm

The Neal kirkwood Trio will be performing at 3rd Street Music School on Friday, March 18th at 7:30 pm. Admission is free. The performers are Neal Kirkwood, piano; Lindsey Horner, bass; and Lieven Venken, drums.

The 3rd St. Music School is at 235 E. 11th St. near 2nd Ave.

01.20.11 - Songs at Smalls, January 29th, 5-7 pm

NEAL KIRKWOOD will be performing two new original Song Cycles, Beat Suite and Ruminations, Saturday, January 29th at SMALLS JAZZ CLUB, 183 West 10th Street, NYC, 5-7 pm. There is a $7 cover .

“Beat Suite" is a contemporary jazz setting of five songs set to poems written by Beat era poets Lawrence Ferlinghetti, James Harmon, Bob Kaufman and Lew Welch.

“Ruminations," for jazz chorus and rhythm section is a setting by Kirkwood to poems by 13th century Persian poet Rumi, with additional Rumi-inspired lyrics by John Fleming.

The singers for Beat Suite are Dee McMillen, Pete McGuiness, and Tim Harrison. Ruminations will be performed by Afterhours, a 13-voice jazz chorus from Kutztown University, Pennsylvania, with Harry Mann on alto sax. Both pieces will be accompanied by a rhythm section featuring Neal Kirkwood, piano and vibes, Lindsey Horner, bass and Allison Miller, drums.

01.05.11 - Monday nights in January

The Neal Kirkwood Vibes Trio will be performing Monday nights in January at the Cafe Martinique, 2160 Broadway at 32nd St. 8-12 pm, no cover charge. The trio features Neal on vibraphone, Jeff Carney on bass and Jeff Brillinger on drums. Come on by!

Also, Smalls Jazz Club's will present 2 of Neal's song cycles as part of their poetry evening, Saturday, January 29th at 5 pm. The pieces are Beat Suite, musical settings of Beat poets Laurence Ferlinghetti, Bob Kaufman, James Harmon, and Lew Welch, plus a premiere of Ruminations, settings of poems by Rumi for jazz chorus and rhythm section.

09.08.10 - Charles Jones centennial concert

Friends, colleagues and students of composer Charles Jones celebrate the 100th anniversary of his birth in a concert on Friday, September 24 at 8 PM in the concert hall of the Mannes College of Music. The program features two works by Jones himself: String Quartet No. 6 and Sonata for Piano, 4-Hands. Also on the concert are Darius Milhaud’s Saudades do Brazil (for solo piano); the cavatina from Ludwig Van Beethoven’s String Quartet, Op. 130; and works by two of Jones’s former students: Neal Kirkwood’s Three Descriptions of Surrealist Paintings (for violin and cello) and David Macdonald’s Two Pieces for String Quartet. The performers are: Calvin Wiersma and Conrad Harris, violin; Dan Panner, viola; Rob LaRue, cello; and Jonathan Faiman and Neal Kirkwood, piano.

Tickets are not required for this FREE concert. The Mannes College of Music is on 150 West 85 St., between Broadway and Amsterdam Ave. To reach Mannes by subway, take the 1 or 9 train to 86th Street. For further information, contact Neal Kirkwood at (212) 586-7807.

Composer Charles Jones was born on June 21, 1910 in Tamworth, Canada. He moved to Toronto at age ten where he studied violin and theory. In 1928 he went to New York to continue his education at the Institute of Musical Art with Sascha Jacobson. He graduated in 1932 in the violin.

In 1935, Jones entered the Juilliard School, where he studied composition with Bernard Wagenaar. He was subsequently sent by the Juilliard School to teach at Mills College, California. There he met the French composer, Darius Milhaud, who became a longtime friend and collaborator. The two taught together for thirty years, first at Mills, then at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, and finally at the Aspen Music Festival. After Milhaud retired in 1969, Jones continued at Aspen as composer-in-residence until 1989. In 1946 Jones moved to New York City, where he taught at the Juillard School and at the Mannes College of Music as head of the Composition Department.

Jones wrote more than ninety compositions, including four symphonies and ten string quartets. His music was played by the New York Philharmonic; the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation; the National Symphony Orchestra; the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande; and the San Francisco, St. Louis, and Dallas Symphonies, among many others. His music is recorded on CRI and Albany Records. He died in 1997.

08.10.10 - Neal kirkwood Trio in California

The Neal Kirkwood Trio, with Jeff Carney on bass and Eddie Marshall on drums, will be performing a jazz concert Sunday, August 22nd, 4 m, at JB Piano Company, 540 Irwin Street, San Rafael, Ca. Tickets are $20 at the door, $15 in advance. Call 415 456-9280 for reservations.

The Trio will be performing original compositions by Kirkwood and Marshall, as well as jazz standards and classics by Monk and Ellington. Neal Kirkwood, originally from the Bay Area, has been living in New York City since 1981, where he has been active as a performer, composer and band leader. He and bassist Jeff Carney, also living in New York City, have an association dating back to their high school days in Santa Rosa, California. Eddie Marshall is acknowledged as a leading figure in the evolution of San Francisco’s contemporary jazz sound. They bring their collective experience and enthusiasm to what promises to be an afternoon of swinging and adventurous piano trio jazz.

05.25.10 - Neal Kirkwood Octet at Smalls

The Octet is back at Smalls. Saturday, May 29th, 7:30 PM. As usual, I'm fortunate to have such great musicians playing this music: Jack Walrath, Vincent Chancey, Jed Levy, Mike McGuiness, David Gibson, Tom Rainey, and Lindsey Horner. Please come on down.

03.15.10 - April 2010

The Chromatic Persuaders return! Friday, April 9th, 7:30 pm, at the Third Street Music School Settlement, 235 East 11th St. New York City, free admission. The Chromatic Persuaders are Mark Feldman, violin; Lindsey Horner, bass; Tom Rainey, drums; and Neal Kirkwood; piano. We toured Europe and recorded a couple of CDs in the 1990's but have been on hiatus the last few years. I'm really looking forward to playing with these guys again!

01.23.10 - February 2010

The Neal Kirkwood Octet is back- at Smalls Jazz Club, Saturday, February 20th,
7:30- 10. For this show we will have Jed Levy and Douglas Yates on sax, Jack Walrath on trumpet, Vincent Chancey on French horn, Curtis Fowlkes on trombone, Lindsey Horner on bass, Jeff Brillinger on frums, and myself on piano. We'll be performing our usual mix of my original compositions and arrangements of the great jazz composers- Duke, Monk, and for this gig an arrangement of Bill evans' Turn Out the Stars.

07.27.09 - July 2009

I've composed music for two theater productions this summer:

Beyond the High Valley, for Ralph Lee and the Metawee River Theater Company. They are currently touring in upstate New York, and will perform September 11-13 and 18-20 at St. John the Divine in New York City. It's a beautiful showing using puppets and flights of imagination to retell an ancient Quechuan myth from Peru.

I just returned from Ohio where I composed and perfromed music for A Price To Pay, for the Yellow Springs Kids Playhouse, directed by John Fleming. The show was written by Daniel Malarkey, and performed by a talented cast of young performers.