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Terence Blanchard: The Hardest Working Man

The trumpeter balances a new album, an opera, mentoring & more

Terence Blanchard
Terence Blanchard
Terence Blanchard's opera "Champion" premieres in St. Louis in June 2013
Lionel Loueke, Joshua Crumbly, Fabian Almazan, Kendrick Scott, Terence Blanchard and Brice Winston (from left) at Newport Jazz Festival, 2013
Terence Blanchard

As 2012 turned into 2013, trumpeter-composer Terence Blanchard, then 50, was juggling the following: composing Champion, his first-ever opera; recording Magnetic (Blue Note), his first album in four years; and serving his second academic year as artistic director of the Henry Mancini Institute at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami. The album was released on May 28, three weeks after classes ended in Miami and just as the opera was going into rehearsals for its June 15 world premiere in St. Louis, Mo. As soon as the opera ended its two-week run, Blanchard left with his quintet for Europe. They were back in the States by August for the Newport Jazz Festival and a tour to showcase the new record.


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