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Jason Moran Pays Tribute to James Reese Europe at Kennedy Center

The pianist will give the U.S. premiere of "The Absence of Ruin," his piece inspired by the legendary bandleader, on Dec. 8

Jason Moran at the 2018 Newport Jazz Festival
Jason Moran at the 2018 Newport Jazz Festival (photo: Alan Nahigian)

Pianist and composer Jason Moran will pay tribute to the legacy of James Reese Europe, the African-American bandleader who introduced jazz to France at the end of World War I, with the U.S. premiere of a new original piece at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. The piece, titled “The Absence of Ruin,” will be performed on Dec. 8 at 8 p.m. and is scheduled to coincide with the centennial of Armistice Day.

Moran will play with his usual trio, the Bandwagon, along with a 10-piece ensemble. Visual media components will be contributed to the show by filmmaker John Akomfrah and cinematographer Bradford Young.

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