NEW YORK (AP) — Wynton Marsalis is taking the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra on its longest tour in nearly 15 years, covering 15 cities in 10 countries over 40 days.
Jazz at Lincoln Center announced Monday its Blue Engine International Tour, named after its new record label, will begin Feb. 4 at The Olympia in Paris and end March 12 at the Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington, New Zealand.
Highlights include a Feb. 18 concert at London's Barbican Centre where guest saxophonist Wayne Shorter will perform his compositions, newly arranged by members of the big band. At the Barbican, the jazz big band will also perform its new George Gershwin Songbook repertoire with guest artists Feb. 20.
The tour also will feature the Australian and New Zealand premieres of Marsalis' "Swing Symphony" performed with local symphony orchestras, including the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, conducted by David Robertson at the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall on Feb. 25-27. There will also be education programs, including a Jazz for Young People concert dedicated to Duke Ellington on March 11 in Wellington.
The big band will draw from a repertoire of more than 75 arrangements, including tunes by Thelonious Monk, classic Blue Note Records recordings by Herbie Hancock, Lee Morgan and others, and selections from its 2015 release, "Live In Cuba." The orchestra will be playing its new "Jazz In The Key Of Life" repertoire with arrangements of pop songs by Steve Wonder, the Beatles, Elton John and others.
"The education programs and breadth of music on this tour speaks to the flexibility of this ensemble," Marsalis said in a statement announcing the tour. "We look forward to bringing a different experience to people at every performance."