UT Dallas to Jazz It Up With Monty Alexander Trio

Pianist’s Eclectic Music Fuses American and Jamaican Influences

Jan. 22, 2008

The UT Dallas School of Arts & Humanities and Dallas’ Sammons Center for the Arts collaborate to bring the Monty Alexander Trio to the Conference Center on Jan. 26 at 8 p.m. Attendees can attend a special pre-concert reception catered by A Fiore Catering at 6:30 p.m.

The Monty Alexander Trio includes Monty Alexander on piano, George Fludas on drums and Hassan Shakur on bass. As a trio, the three have performed internationally, including concerts in Italy, France and England.

Alexander blends American and Jamaican musical styles, drawing on jazz, ska, big band, swing and reggae influences. His unique abilities have enabled him to work with a diverse assortment of talented artists including Frank Sinatra, Ray Brown, Sonny Rollins, Dizzy Gillespie, Ernest Ranglin, Quincy Jones, Robbie Shakespeare, Sly Dunbar and Natalie Cole.

Alexander describes his music this way: “My goal is to uplift. The piano, to me, is a vehicle for connecting to other human beings. I’m very open to all forms of music. I’m not a bebop musician; I’m not a calypso musician; I’m not a reggae musician. I’m a musician who loves it all.”

George Fludas has appeared on numerous CDs performing with Eric Alexander, Lin Halliday, Ira Sullivan and Bobby Broom. He has performed with musicians such as Betty Carter, Kenny Burrell, Junior Cook, Jesse Davis, Lou Donaldson, Tommy Flanagan, Johnny Griffin, Slide Hampton, Roy Hargrove, Hank Jones, Buddy Montgomery, Cedar Walton and Frank Wess. Fludas currently performs with Ray Brown’s Trio, Ron Perrillo’s trio and the Chicago Jazz Orchestra, a 17-piece repertory big band.

Shakur has performed on Alexander’s past three albums. When he was 12 years old, Shakur joined the Craig Hundley Trio, playing bass on television shows such as Johnny Carson, the Today Show, the Della Reese Show, Ted Mack Amateur Hour and Jonathan Winters. Since then, he has performed with such artists as Loretta Devine, Billy Eckstine, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Herb Ellis, Sarah Vaughan and Joe Williams. Shakur still performs with the Duke Ellington Orchestra, which he joined when he was 18.

Tickets for the concert are $20 for general admission and free at the door to UT Dallas students with valid Comet Cards. A ticket for both the concert and reception is $35. Sammons Center members can attend the concert and reception for $30. UT Dallas ticket office hours are from 2 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and at the door one hour prior to show time. For advance ticket purchases using Visa, MasterCard or Discover, please call 972-883-2552.

For information about the many musical, arts, theatre, dance and other performances and exhibitions held throughout the year at UT Dallas, please call 972-UTD-ARTS (972-883-2787) or e-mail utdarts@utdallas.edu. People with disabilities in need of special accommodations may call 972-883-2982, Texas Relay Operator: 1-800-RELAYVV.


Media contact: Kristi Barrus, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2972, kristi.barrus@utdallas.edu
More information about the concert: http://ah.utdallas.edu/season0708/montyalexander.htm.

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