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Susquehanna Life

See top jazz virtuoso perform for free in Weis Center lobby

Jan 22, 2016 06:29PM ● By Erica Shames

Aaron Diehl. Photo courtesy of John Abbott.

Aaron Diehl Trio will perform on Wednesday, February 10 at 7:30 p.m. in the Weis Center lobby. The free performance is open to the public and tickets are not required.

There will be a free pre-performance talk with the artist immediately before the performance, from 6:45-7:15 p.m. in the Weis Center lobby.

The tour engagement is made possible by a grant from Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation as part of its Jazz Touring Network with support from the National Endowment of the Arts.

Pianist Aaron Diehl is one of the most sought after jazz virtuosos, consistently playing with what The New York Times describes as “melodic precision, harmonic erudition, and elegant restraint.” Diehl’s meticulously thought-out performances, collaborations, and compositions are a leading force in today’s generation of jazz contemporaries, spearheading a distinct union of traditional and fresh artistry.

Diehl’s next album on Mack Avenue Records, Space, Time, Continuum, emphasizes the artistic collaborations between generations. Establishing the jazz language as a continuum uniting artists, the album includes performances by NEA Jazz Master Benny Golson (tenor saxophone) and Duke Ellington Orchestra alumnus Joe Temperley (baritone saxophone), alongside Diehl’s other established trio—Quincy Davis (drums) and David Wong (bass). The majority of the album consists of Diehl’s original compositions. The title track, featuring vocalist Charenee Wade, was co-written by Cécile McLorin Salvant.

The Bespoke Man’s Narrative (2013), Diehl’s debut album, reached No.1 on the JazzWeek Jazz Chart and was hailed by JazzTimes for displaying “precision and polish.” KCRW praised the album, stating, “This is an album you can listen to again and again, honest music that invites you back in to discover new wonders with each listening.”

Live at the Players (2010) featured both of his trios: Quincy Davis and David Wong, and Paul Sikivie and Lawrence Leathers. His first solo album, Live at Caramoor (2008), was a concert recorded at the Caramoor Festival.

Diehl’s recent collaborations with internationally acclaimed artists and ensembles include: Warren Wolf, Lew Tabackin, Matt Wilson, Wycliffe Gordon, Wynton Marsalis and his Septet, and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra. As the 2014 Monterey Jazz Festival Commission Artist, Diehl became one of the youngest artists to receive this honor and composed Three Streams of Expression, dedicated to pianist and composer John Lewis. He is also the 2013 recipient of the Jazz Journalists Associations Award for Up-And-Coming Artist, the 2012 Prix du Jazz Classique recipient for his album Live at the Players from the Académie du Jazz, and is the winner of the 2011 Cole Porter Fellowship from the American Pianists Association. In an effort to nurture the development of young jazz artists and the community, Diehl was the inaugural Artistic Director of the Catskill Jazz Factory.

Aaron Diehl is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where he studied with Kenny Barron, Eric Reed, and Oxana Yablonskaya.

The 2011 Cole Porter Fellow of the American Pianists Association, Diehl has been hailed by the New York Times as “a smart young pianist with a fastidious grasp of jazz traditions.”

He is committed to unearthing the treasures of a rich musical language through collaborative efforts with artists across generations.

In 2002, Diehl was a finalist in Jazz at Lincoln Center's Essentially Ellington competition, where he was awarded “Outstanding Soloist.” The following year, he was invited to tour with the Wynton Marsalis Septet on their European tour.

A 2007 graduate of the Juilliard School, he is also a Martin E. Segal Award recipient.

Diehl released his first live album in 2008, a solo concert recorded at the Caramoor Festival. In 2010, Live at the Players featured two of his working trios. His latest release, The Bespoke Man's Narrative is the current product of Diehl's ensemble cultivation, influenced partly by John Lewis and the Modern Jazz Quartet.

He is the 2013 Jazz Journalist Association's Up-And-Coming Musician of the Year Award recipient.

For more information about this free performance contact Lisa Leighton, marketing and outreach director, at 570-577-3727 or

The next event in the Weis Center’s 2015-16 Series is a Family Discovery performance by Tao: Seventeen Samurai on Tuesday, February 16 at 7:30 p.m. at the Weis Center.  Tickets are available at

For more information about the Weis Center for the Performing Arts, visit or

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