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Esperanza Spalding headlines 2017 U of I Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival

Jazz virtuosic bassist, singer and composer Esperanza Spalding will headline the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival at the University of Idaho on Feb. 25, 2017.
Jazz virtuosic bassist, singer and composer Esperanza Spalding will headline the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival at the University of Idaho on Feb. 25, 2017. TNS

The University of Idaho’s Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival will bring Grammy winner Esperanza Spalding to headline its February concert series, as well as work with students from Idaho and across the country during the three-day festival in Moscow. Series tickets to the festival go on sale Saturday, Nov. 19.

A native of the Northwest, Spalding grew up in Portland, Ore., where she began playing violin with the Oregon Chamber Music Society when she was 5. She trained as a classical musician, then switched to jazz as a teenager.

Today, she is a four-time Grammy-winning jazz bassist, cellist, singer and lyricist. She burst onto the national spotlight in 2011 when she received the Grammy for Best New Artist and since then has worked to bring jazz back into the American music mainstream.

At 31, she has seven collaborative and five solo albums under her belt as a composer, bassist and vocalist.

She will perform with the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival Big Band on Feb. 25, 2017.

The 2017 lineup also includes trumpet and flugelhorn virtuoso Claudio Roditi, Native American jazz singer Julia Keefe and renowned jazz singer Rene Marie and her quintet.

The U of I festival brings hundreds of junior high school, high school and college jazz musicians to its campus in Moscow for three days of clinics and workshops with professional instructors and guest artists, as well as opportunities to perform.

Each night of performances at the Kibbie Dome will open with students winners from the day’s competitions.

On Feb. 24, 2017, the vocalese group New York Voices and the festival musicians will honor the festival’s namesake, Lionel Hampton. They’ll take a musical look at the Benny Goodman Quartet, the group in which Hampton got his start, with traditional and contemporary renditions of its most famous recordings.

University of Idaho 2017 Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival

Thursday, Feb. 23, to Saturday, Feb. 25, University of Idaho, Moscow. Concerts will be at the ASUI-Kibbie Activity Center. Series concert tickets will be $70 to $135 general and go on sale Saturday, Nov. 19; individual concert tickets will be $30 to $50, general; $15 to $40 for students. Individual tickets go on sale Monday, Dec. 5. All concerts begin at 7:30 p.m. For tickets, call 208-885-7212. UIdaho.edu/jazzfest or call (208) 885-5900.

Find the full schedule here.

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