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  • Writer's pictureKCJO

Stardust Gala

Updated: May 28, 2020

“And now, the purple dusk of twilight time steals across the meadows of my heart.. ...the melody haunts my reverie, and I am once again with you... stardust melody, the memory of love’s refrain.”

These are some of the most beautiful, poetic lyrics in music history, to Hoagy Carmichael’s classic tune: “Stardust.” One of the truly timeless songs, “Stardust” has been given memorable treatments from legends such as Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, John Coltrane, Willie Nelson, and Wynton Marsalis. It is an inimitable composition: almost strange in its structure and melodic and harmonic progression, but instantly recognizable. It is reminiscent of a time where romance was the peak of lyrical expression, with a tunefulness that reflected that doe-eyed style of love. It is equally yesteryear and contemporary, and it is the theme of the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra’s 2019 Gala, that we very much hope to see you attending!

KCJO has proven to be one of the most musically diverse bands in the world. We’ve played great period music from Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Stan Kenton, and so many others. We’ve reimagined classic popular music from eras of Motown and the British Invasion. We have creative soloists, stunning brass, woodwind, and rhythm sections, and can interweave moments of introspective passion to raucous roars of trumpets and trombones throughout a single evening. That being said, we can also sling around some dance music to the point where, you could close your eyes and think you were hearing Goodman or Webb or Henderson or Herman.

So, next Saturday, May 18th, we are taking the stage at the elegant Count Basie Ballroom in the Downtown Marriott for our Gala 2019, where you’ll be dancing the night away to our top tones. In the classic big band era, you didn’t just listen, you got up and danced! We love playing this music for the enjoyment of all people. Maybe you’ve checked us out at Union Station or Liberty Hall and cut a rug to your favorite tunes, or maybe this could be your introduction to us outside of the Kauffman Center. 

Our Gala events are great fun to attend, but they also help us as an organization tremendously. It is our major year-end annual fundraiser, and your support helps KCJO reach our goals of cultivating educational missions and performance opportunities for the years to come. You may or may not be aware that we are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, and are increasingly dedicated to providing quality educational opportunities for students and community alike in and beyond Kansas City. The purchase of your ticket to the Stardust Gala not only secures you the best dancing experience of the Spring, it allows us to continue to put on great programming, to help develop scholarships for music students, to create content that tells the story of jazz in our town, and to provide events to help enrich Kansas City’s vibrant and ever-growing jazz scene.

So, we’re extremely excited to put forth this beautiful and fun event! There’s some real estate on the dance floor reserved specifically for you - won’t you join us?

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