Thirty-four bands from four Midwestern states will take part in the third annual Kansas City Jazz Summit held on the campus of Kansas City Kansas Community College Wednesday through Friday, April 24-26.
Highlighting the three-day summit will be a Big Band Extravaganza Wednesday night and the Kansas City Jazz Heritage “Basically Basie” Thursday afternoon.
The KCKCC Jazz Ensemble, which swept No. 1 ratings at the Pittsburg State and University of Kansas jazz festivals this spring, and the New Vintage Big Band will perform Wednesday at 7 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center on the KCKCC campus at 7250 State Ave. There is no admission charge but donations will be accepted.
Audience members will choose the winner of the “Basically Basie” competition, an event in which competing bands will choose three Count Basie tunes to replicate the sound, style and the joy of the Basie bands with the top two bands competing in a playoff Thursday at 5 p.m.
Following their performances, members of the audience will text their votes for the winning band.
“The text messaging was a big hit last year,” said Jim Mair, summit director and director of instrumental Jazz at KCKCC. “We had almost 1,000 votes tabulated between the two finalists.” The Blue Valley Northwest Big Dog Jazz Band directed by John Selzer is the defending champion, having won the inaugural in 2011 and repeating last year.
Five college bands and 29 middle and high school bands from Iowa, Missouri, Oklahoma and Kansas will be performing Wednesday through Friday, beginning each day at 8:30 a.m. and running through 5 p.m. All are open to the public without charge. Additional information can be obtained by contacting Jim Mair at 913-288-7503 or firstname.lastname@example.org.