LaVon Hardison photo by Lisa Hagen Glynn.
Wednesdays, August 14, 21 & 28
The Seattle Public Library
1000 Fourth Ave
Partnering once again for the second year in a row, Seattle Public Library, Earshot Jazz, and Seattle Center Festál are joining forces to bring Art on the Plaza to the Central Library for three Wednesdays in August. The free, all-ages events are a celebration of art, music, and activism.
This year’s theme, “Rebirthing a Nation: Letters from the Future,” brings the future into focus with opportunities to listen to young musical talents and thinkers. The series ends on the evening of August 28 when, from 6 to 8:30pm, Seattle’s young emerging civic leaders will gather to discuss solutions for issues related to homelessness, hatred, climate change, and mass incarceration. Davida Ingram, Public Engagement Programs Manager for Seattle Public Library, spearheaded the partnership.
Leading up to the culminating discussion, the community is invited to enjoy three afternoons of music. Seattle JazzED’s Girls Ellington Project, an all-girls, all-city youth jazz ensemble led by Kelly Clingan, and their #jazzgirl movement start the series on Wednesday, August 14 from noon to 2pm. Seattle JazzED is a nonprofit that serves grades 4-12 throughout King County, hosting workshops and programs to teach students how to play musical instruments. The Girls Ellington Project is comprised of female-identified students from grades 8–12.
LaVon Hardison takes to the plaza on August 21 from noon to 2pm. The Tacoma chanteuse entertains with snappy vocals and an engaging stage presence centering joy and humor. Accompanied by her regular trio comprised of drummer Jeff Busch, bassist Osama Afifi, and Eric Verlinde on piano, she bounces between jazz standards, 60s pop rock, classic R&B, and any other genre she feels a connection to.
Alex Dugdale, Colombia-born and Seattle raised, is a saxophonist, tap artist, and a household name in Seattle’s jazz scene. His Fade Quintet plays regularly at storied spots including Tula’s Restaurant and Jazz Club. The Quintet, featuring John Hansen on piano, Cole Schuster on guitar, Greg Feingold on bass, Max Holmberg on drums, and, of course, Dugdale on the sax, crackle on stage with the energy of hard post-bop and intricate solos. They will close out the weekday afternoon series on August 28 from noon to 2pm.
The future will burn bright at the closing celebration and discussion on August 28, with “Generations” Student Jazz Quartet performing before the young Seattleites address some of the most urgent topics facing our city and world.