The Torrington Historical Society is presenting an evening of jazz featuring the Peter McEachern-Mario Pavone Phase 2 Quintet at 6 p.m. Aug. 14. Rain date is Aug. 15.
The concert will be held on the grounds of the Torrington Historical Society, 192 Main St. Due to COVID-19 and social distancing requirements, seating will be limited. There will be 31 socially distanced locations available. Each location is $30 and can seat a household group or social bubble of 1- 4 people, according to an email from organizers. Attendees must wear masks and are asked to bring their own chairs or blanket. Advance sales only. Lawn locations can be purchased at www.torringtonhistoricalsociety.org.
The concert will feature Peter McEachern and Mario Pavone, with a cast of all star jazz musicians. The music will include jazz standards and original compositions by McEachern and Pavone. Other performers include Noah Preminger, saxophone; Zaccai Curtis, keyboards, and Curtis Torian on drums.
The Torrington Historical Society is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to collecting, preserving and sharing Torrington’s rich and diverse history. The museum is located at the historic Hotchkiss-Fyler estate in downtown Torrington.
McEachern has toured and recorded three CDs for Polygram with Blues legend Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown; has worked and recorded with minimalist composer Lamonte Young, and is featured on “Insomnia” with the Thomas Chapin Trio on Knitting Factory Works. McEachern played on Pavone’s acclaimed “Song for Septet” as well as five CD’s by Pavone including “Vertical”, Pavone’s 2017 release with Tony Malaby, Dave Ballou Oscar Noriega and Michael Sarin on Clean Feed Records. In addition he recorded the Wendy Chambers piece “A Mass for Mass Trombones” on the Centaur label. He received a fellowship for music composition from the Connecticut Commission on the Arts.
He is a member of The CT Composing Improvisers Project, which includes Stephen Haynes, Mario Pavone, and 2010 Grammy winner David Darling. McEachern performed with various ensembles curated by the Creative Musicians Improvisers Forum with such luminaries as Wadada Leo Smith, Anthony Braxton, Muhal Richard Abrams, Marty Ehrlich, Andrew Cyrille, Gerry Hemingway, and Ray Anderson. He has released several CD’s recently: “No Chordtet” featuring Dave Santoro, George Sovak and Hamir Atwal, ”Shockwave” featuring the late Thomas Chapin, Steve Johns, Mario Pavone and Jamie Finegan, and No Chordtet’s 2nd CD “Subconscious Love” on Truth Revolution Records. He has a new release on Truth Revolution called “New Chordtet,” featuring Mike DiRubbo and Jimin Park. He is also a member of the New England Jazz Ensemble and has recorded four CD’s with the group. The most recent is a Jazz version of “Peter and the Wolf” with Giacamo Gates. His latest CD, “Bone Code” (2018) featuring Michael Sarin and Mario Pavone is on the Clean Feed label. Peter has been a teaching artist at the Litchfield Jazz Camp since 1998.
Bassist/Composer Mario Pavone has been part of some of the most pivotal milestones in jazz over the past six decades. After being inspired by hearing John Coltrane at the Village Vanguard in 1961, Pavone began playing the bass, settling in New York City and making connections with pianist Paul Bley and trumpeter Bill Dixon, participating in what would eventually be called “the first loft era.” Pavone went on to tour and recorded with Bley and Dixon. In New Haven, in the mid-70’s Pavone became involved with Wadada Leo Smith and Anthony Braxton as part of The Creative Musicians Improvisors Forum, a musician run collective based on some of the precepts of Chicago’s Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, organizing and playing in large orchestra concerts featuring Muhal Richard Abrams, George Lewis, Marty Ehrlich, Oliver Lake, Ray Anderson, Carla Bley, and many others. In the mid ‘80’s Pavone became involved in the groundbreaking downtown Knitting Factory scene, building a deep relationship with alto saxophonist Thomas Chapin and becoming part of his highly acclaimed power trio. From 1990 to 1996 the trio recorded extensively, toured in Europe and the U.S., and performed at major international jazz festivals. After Chapin’s untimely passing in 1998, Pavone began a long recording career as a leader, beginning with the New World and Knitting Factory labels, then touring widely in Europe with an enduring core group of A-list improvisors — Tony Malaby, Steven Bernstein, Gerald Cleaver, Peter Madsen, and Michael Sarin.
At present Pavone has recorded 30 critically acclaimed CD’s as a leader, many placing on Top 10 year-end lists. In 2010 Pavone was recipient of a significant Doris Duke Foundation composer’s grant resulting in multiple performances and a recording of Pavone’s compositions arranged by virtuoso trumpeter Dave Ballou. Pavone and Ballou enjoy an ongoing musical collaboration. Recently, Pavone has focused his composing and performing energies on the classic piano trio format, reconnecting with Paul Bley for a recording, releasing a live disc with Craig Taborn and Gerald Cleaver, recording 3 CD’s with his Dialect Trio featuring Matt Mitchell and Tyshawn Sorey, the latest to be released in July 2019 on Clean Feed Records. Among other recent activity this year Pavone has been touring and recording with legendary vocalist Patty Waters in a group featuring Barry Altschul and Burton Greene, and recording with long-time associate, trombonist, Peter McEachern on the trombonist’s new CD.
Of Brooklyn-based saxophonist Noah Preminger, The New York Times declares: “Mr. Preminger designs a different kind of sound for each note, an individual destiny and story.” Preminger, just 32 and the winner of Downbeat Magazine’s Rising Star Best Tenor Saxophonist, has recorded over 12 critically acclaimed albums. Multiple recordings were released in 2017-18, including Meditations On Freedom, released on Inauguration Day, 2017, as a musical protest of ominous political developments in America. In addition, a duo album recorded in NEC’s Jordan Hall with pianist, Frank Carlberg, a Quartet recording on Criss Cross Records, and a recording of the music of Otto Preminger’s films — on French, vinyl-only label, Newvelle Records. In 2018, Preminger and co-leader Rob Garcia created the Dead Composers Club and released The Chopin Project, the first of the quartet’s planned annual examinations of deceased composer’s oeuvres.
In 2018, Preminger has contributed music to a major motion picture, was awarded a composition Fellowship at Banff Centre’s Leighton Artists Studio and is recording two new albums of original music. Born in 1986, Preminger grew up in Canton, Connecticut. He released his debut album, Dry Bridge Road, just after his 21st birthday, which was named Debut of the Year in the Village Voice Critics Poll. Preminger’s second and third albums as a leader came in 2011 and 2013 while signed to the Palmetto Records label. The Boston Globe hails Preminger as “A master with standards and ballads, as well as an adventurous composer.” The saxophonist has performed on key stages from the United States to Europe and Australia, and he has played and/or recorded with the likes of Jason Moran, Dave Holland, John Patitucci, Fred Hersch, Dave Douglas, Billy Hart, Joe Lovano, Victor Lewis, John and Bucky Pizzarelli, Cecil McBee, George Cables, and Roscoe Mitchell.
Zaccai Curtis has been performing on piano since the age of five. As a high school student, he was recognized by Down Beat Magazine as a top young performer and chosen as the pianist for the National Grammy Band Small Combo. He is a rising star in the 2020 Downbeat Critics Poll. After graduating from New England Conservatory in 2005 with a Masters degree, Zaccai moved to New York City where he performs regularly with Donald Harrison, Cindy Blackman Santana, Eddie Palmieri, Christian Scott, Ralph Peterson, T.K. Blue, Brian Lynch, Ray Vega, Eric Person, and others.
Curtis composes and arranges for his own quartet, trio, Big-Band and more. In 2003, he won the ASCAP Young Jazz Composer’s Competition and received the honor each year through 2006. The Curtis Brothers Quartet was selected by the U.S. State Department to participate in the American Music Abroad (Jazz Ambassadors) program for two tours in 2006 to places as far flung as the Maldives. He was also awarded the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism’s Artist Fellowship and recently the prestigious Doris Duke/ Chamber Music America New Works grant.
Born in New Rochelle, N.Y. and raised in Danbury, Curtis Torian worked as a colonial snare drummer since the age of 9 in the Connecticut Rebels of 76 Fife and Drum Corp, which toured annually to New Orleans, LA, Ireland, Canada, and a nationwide Bicentennial tour of the US in 1976. Torian’s earliest influence of the drum set as applied to popular improvisational styles was realized in the teachings of Westchester County New York area teacher, Ralph C. Pace (1925 - 2006), who was a regular instructor of a family friend. Graduating from Danbury High School led Torian to The Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, where his college mates are friends that have evolved into some of the most expressive and creative artists on the scene over the last 25 or 30 years. Torian has retired from teaching in the Connecticut Public Schools. Subsequent graduate accomplishments include Western CT State University, Danbury, (MS) as well as the State University of New York at Purchase (MFA).