(PRINCETON, NJ) -- Blue Curtain, a beloved Princeton summer tradition, returns to the Pettoranello Gardens Amphitheater (Route 206 and Mountain Ave) with two FREE concerts in July: The Eddie Palmieri Salsa Orchestra on July 16 and the Ali Ryerson/Peter Levin Quintet on July 30. Both concerts begin at 7:30pm.
Saturday, July 16 - Known as one of the finest pianists of the past 60 years, ten-time Grammy Award-winning Eddie Palmieri is an arranger and composer with a unique, personal, richly complex, and infectious take on salsa and Latin jazz. Named an NEA Jazz Master in 2013, he skillfully fuses the rhythm of his Puerto Rican heritage with the complexity of his jazz influences: Thelonious Monk, Herbie Hancock, and McCoy Tyner.
Featuring an all-star roster The Eddie Palmieri Salsa Orchestra includes Raul Agraz (trumpet), Anthony Almonte (vocals), Jimmy Bosch (trombone), Jose Claussell (bongo), Luques Curtis (bass), Louis Fouche (alto saxophone), Nelson Gonzalez (tres guitar, coro), Leo Gruber (coro), Nadav Nirenberg (trombone) and Vicente “Little Johnny” Rivero (congas).
Saturday, July 30 - With a career spanning nearly five decades, jazz flutist Ali Ryerson has consistently ranked among the top flutists in the Downbeat Jazz Poll for well over a decade. Born in 1952 in New York City, Ali grew up in a musical family. Her father, Art Ryerson, was a renowned jazz guitarist who got his start with the Paul Whiteman Orchestra, and later became a top studio player in NYC, recording with everyone from Louis Armstrong,
Erroll Garner, Charlie Parker, and Sarah Vaughan, to Frank Sinatra. Ali Ryerson has carried on the family tradition, becoming an international touring and recording artist, with performances ranging from Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, to the Blue Note (NYC and Japan), plus festival appearances worldwide. Ryerson has recorded and/or performed with jazz greats such as Roy Haynes, Kenny Barron, Hubert Laws, Stéphane Grappelli, Art Farmer, and Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra.
Keyboardist-arranger-composer Pete Levin has performed and recorded with hundreds of jazz and pop artists including Paul Simon, Annie Lennox, Charles Mingus, David Sanborn, Lenny White, Wayne Shorter, Jaco Pastorius, Chuck Mangione and John Scofield – receiving critical acclaim for his work during a 16-year association with the legendary Gil Evans, and his 8-year association with jazz composer Jimmy Giuffre.
Concertgoers are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, and blankets. Pettoranello Gardens is located in Community Park North, Princeton (Route 206 and Mountain Avenue). In case of rain or extreme heat, the shows will move to PHS Performing Arts Center at Franklin Ave. & Walnut Lane, Princeton.
Blue Curtain, co-sponsored by the Princeton Recreation Department, is a New Jersey nonprofit organization dedicated to presenting the highest quality of culturally diverse music and dance to the audiences in the Princeton area.