MOUNT VERNON — A treat for the feet — and for the ears — comes to Mount Vernon, as the Knox Community Jazz Orchestra celebrates the arrival of spring with a community dance featuring classics from the Swing Era.
The “Spring Ahead” Swing Dance will take place on Saturday, March 10, starting at 7 p.m., at the St. Paul’s Parish House, 100 E. High St., Mount Vernon. Tickets are available at the door.
“Whether you love to dance, or just like to tap your toes, we can promise an evening full of great music and great energy,” said Ted Buehrer, conductor of the 20-member big band. “And if you’re feeling unsure about getting out on the dance floor, the evening will begin with an informal swing dance lesson, taught by members of the Kenyon College Ballroom Dance Club.”
The community dance kicks off the Jazz Orchestra’s second season. The group, composed of talented local musicians, has already won an enthusiastic following with opening-season performances at Ariel Foundation Park, the Dan Emmett Festival last summer and at a Christmas concert in December.
For the “Spring Ahead” Swing Dance, the band’s set list includes such tunes as Billy Strayhorn’s “Take the A Train” (made famous by the Duke Ellington Orchestra), “Corner Pocket” (a Count Basie Orchestra hit) and “I’m Getting Sentimental Over You” (famed for the Tommy Dorsey trombone solo). Accompanying the Jazz Orchestra on several numbers will be vocalist Alison Cline, a regular at the group’s performances.
Beverages and snacks will be available during the evening.
The Jazz Orchestra’s next performance will be at Ariel-Foundation Park on June 3, when the group opens the park’s 2018 concert series.
“We’re delighted to be returning to the park, where we had our inaugural performance during Memorial Day Weekend in 2017,” said Buehrer.
Buehrer, who teaches music at Kenyon and directs the college’s jazz ensemble, founded the Knox Community Jazz Orchestra, which continues a local big-band tradition that goes back to the 1960s. In addition to conducting the band, he plays trumpet. Other musicians include active and retired public school band directors, professionals, and recent college graduates from the area.