Ragtime and Early Jazz Festival Ragtime and Early Jazz Festival


Be a part of the 5th Annual Durango Ragtime & Early Jazz Festival, March 24-26, 2017, in Durango, Colorado. World-renowned performers will be Swingin' It Up at the historic Strater Hotel for three entertaining days filled with live music, silent film comedies, dance lessons, after hours parties, and more! Buy Your Ragtime Festival Tickets Here

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FESTIVAL ENTERTAINMENT SCHEDULE

Fifth Annual Durango Ragtime & Early Jazz Festival
March 24-26, 2017

FridayMarch 24

Pullman Room
10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.RAGTIME IN HOLLYWOOD!
Symposium with Adam Swanson 

Festival music director Adam Swanson starts the weekend with a bang—a first-of-its-kind symposium about the Golden Age of Hollywood’s fascination with the ragtime era. Musical stars like Mae West, Alice Faye, Judy Garland, Doris Day, and more sang numerous ragtime songs in their movies—and audiences loved it for decades! Experience once more the uplifting songs and beautiful stars of the past you thought had been forgotten, many in glorious Technicolor, illuminated by Adam’s historical commentary.

Pullman Sessions
11:15 a.m. – 11:45 a.m., Adam Swanson (Special Set with Slide Show!)
11:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., Brian Holland
12:15 p.m. – 12:45 p.m., Carl Sonny Leyland

Lunch Break12:45 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Henry Strater Theatre
2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., “Ragtime Roots” Concert
Danny Coots, Brian Holland, Morten Gunnar Larsen, Carl Sonny Leyland, Adam Swanson 

This year’s opening concert is another tribute to the classic and traditional ragtime of the first two decades of the twentieth century. Thrill to the sounds of authentic ragtime played by such talented artists as Brian Holland and Sonny Leyland, including many different regional styles and subgenres. We are also excited to present Oslo, Norway’s fabulous Morten Gunnar Larsen in his first Durango appearance.

Dinner Break: 4:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Henry Strater Theatre
7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., “Dixieland in Durango” Concert
Act I: Morten Gunnar Larsen, Carl Sonny Leyland, and Adam Swanson
Act II: Holland/Coots Jazz Quintet

Each of the evening concerts includes all the festival headliners. The first half of Friday night’s concert will include pianists Sonny Leyland, Morten Larsen, and Adam Swanson. The second half will feature a special new group, the Holland/Coots Jazz Quintet. Top early jazz musicians from around the country come together to perform not only dixieland-style jazz but many standards for your listening pleasure. The individual musicians from the band will make multiple appearances during the festival, including the after-hours parties in the Diamond Belle.

After-Hours Party in the Diamond Belle Saloon: 9:00 p.m. – 1:45 a.m.

Saturday, March 25

Pullman Room
10:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.Memories of Eubie Blake
Symposium with Morten Gunnar Larsen 

Morten was very fortunate in getting to meet and to study with the ninety-year old master when he came to Oslo to perform in 1977. Larsen was then a young student of classical piano.
Blake became a profound inspiration to him in continuing his growing interest in ragtime and early jazz music, and the seminar includes pictures and letters from Eubie to Morten, as well as a few private recordings from his visit to Norway.
Later he also visited him in his home in Brooklyn not long before he died.

Pullman Sessions
11:15 a.m. – 11:45 a.m., Morten Gunnar Larsen
11:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., Carl Sonny Leyland and Marc Caperone, trumpet
12:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m., Brian Holland 

Lunch Break12:45 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. 

Henry Strater Theatre
2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., “American Standards” Concert
Act I: Holland/Coots Jazz Quintet
Act II: Morten Gunnar Larsen and Adam Swanson 

Saturday afternoon’s concert showcases the American standards of the 1920s and ‘30s that have become what is now called the “Great American Songbook.” In the first half, the Jazz Quintet will perform many standards, and, in the second half, Morten and Adam will play more American standards as piano solos or duets. Much of the early jazz repertoire is simply ragtime in another form—the influence of this music on the twentieth century is indelible.

Dinner Break: 4:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Henry Strater Theatre
7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., “Rag-a-Jazz” Concert
Act I: Morten Gunnar Larsen, Carl Sonny Leyland, and Adam Swanson
Act II: Holland/Coots Jazz Quintet 

Saturday night’s big show is another concert with all the festival headliners. The first part will feature pianists—Morten, Sonny, and Adam—and the second half will star the Holland/Coots Jazz Quintet. Expect a wide variety of music from the ragtime / early jazz era and beyond (or, as some have called it, “Rag-a-Jazz”). 

After Hours Party in the Diamond Belle Saloon: 9:00 p.m. – 1:45 a.m. 

Sunday, March 26 

Henry Strater Theatre
10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Silent FiSlm Comedies
with Adam Swanson, piano
Out West (Starring “Fatty” Arbuckle and Buster Keaton, 1918)
His Wooden Wedding (Starring Charley Chase, 1925)
The Dome Doctor (Starring Larry Semon, 1925) 

Pullman Sessions
11:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., Brian Holland
12:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m., Carl Sonny Leyland

Lunch Break: 12:45 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. 

Henry Strater Theatre
2:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., “Morten Gunnar Larsen in Concert” 

Because he is traveling all the way from Norway for our festival, we want to take advantage of Morten’s presence by devoting an entire concert to his talents. Morten is a pianist nonpareil and leader of the Ophelia Ragtime Orchestra, one of only two or three truly professional ragtime orchestras in the world. Morten’s specialties include Louis M. Gottschalk, classic ragtime, Eubie Blake, Jelly Roll Morton, and much more. 

Dinner Break: 4:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. 

Henry Strater Theatre
7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., “Show Stoppers” Concert
Act I: Morten Gunnar Larsen, Carl Sonny Leyland, and Adam Swanson
Act II: Holland/Coots Jazz Quintet 

The grand festival finale once again includes all festival headliners. It is likely to include many duets and much collaboration among the musicians, in addition to real “show stopping” material. How many musicians can we fit in the Henry Strater Theatre? Come to the festival finale to find out!! 

After Hours Party in the Diamond Belle Saloon: 9:00 p.m. – 1:45 a.m.