Friday, October 15, 2010

Internationally Acclaimed Jazz Pianist Set to Dazzle

See The Oliver Jones Trio Up Close & Personal in Spruce Grove on Friday, October 29

Oliver Jones was referred to as one of Canada’s most beloved and admired musicians and most distinguished cultural ambassadors when he was presented with the Governor General’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2005. Mr. Jones’ outstanding musical talent is matched only by his generosity towards his audiences. “It’s wonderful to look out and see people smiling,” he says. “The communication between musician and audience – that’s the best part.” For years, he has treated audiences to the vision and sound of all the best that piano can offer. Best experienced in an intimate venue, Mr Jones is thrilled to be returning to the Edmonton area to perform at two Up Close and Personal soft-seat venues, Horizon Stage in Spruce Grove on October 29 and the Shell Theatre in Fort Saskatchewan on October 30.

Born on September 11, 1934 to Barbadian parents, Oliver Theophilus Jones grew up in the same Montreal neighbourhood as his life-long friend and continuing inspiration, Oscar Peterson. As a youngster, he would sit on the Peterson family’s porch, listening to the older boy practice, and eventually Oscar’s sister, Daisy, became Oliver’s first classical piano teacher. A child prodigy, Oliver began playing the piano at two and half years old, gave his first performance at the age of five, and was hitting the stage on a regular basis by the age of nine. With a performing history that has lasted 71 years, it does not seem surprising that when Jones tried to retire in 2000, he simply couldn’t resist returning to the music scene.

Oliver Jones is the recipient of numerous awards including the Order of Canada, the Order of Quebec, several Felix and Juno Awards, the Martin Luther King, Jr. Award for Excellence in Music and four honorary doctorates.

Oliver Jones is prepared to sweep local audiences off their feet once more, having performed as a soloist at Horizon Stage and with his trio at Shell Theatre in 2009. On this visit to Alberta, he will be performing with bassist Éric Lagacé and drummer Jim Doxas. Éric Lagacé started playing the double-bass professionally when he was 19 years old. An active member of the Canadian Jazz scene, he has also performed with the Ottawa National Arts Centre Orchestra, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, and the Quebec Symphony Orchestra. Montreal drummer Jim Doxas divides his time playing with Oliver Jones, The John Roney Trio and Chet Doxas Quartet, striving to make the case that percussion is every bit as significant as a lyrical instrument.

Tickets for the Oliver Jones Trio’s 7:30 p.m. concert at Horizon Stage on October 29 are $35 for adults, $30 for students and seniors and can be purchased by calling


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