RICHARDSON, Texas (Jan. 3, 2006) — Mardi Gras will take on special meaning in New Orleans this year because of Hurricane Katrina and the devastation it caused to that city. In North Texas, the annual celebration will start early with a lively jazz performance at The University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) by the musical group N’Awlins Gumbo Kings Jan. 20 at 8 p.m. in the Conference Center on campus.
New Orleans expects to hold Mardi Gras this year despite the destruction, widespread flooding and deaths the hurricane caused. The 2006 event is February 28.
At UTD, the Gumbo Kings will blend trumpet, clarinet, saxophone, piano, trombone, bass, drums and vocals to create lively, authentic New Orleans-style music by six talented musicians. Although the group is relatively new, individual members have performed with such notable musicians as Ray Charles, Paul McCartney, Woody Herman, Stan Kenton and Ellis Marsalis.
Trumpet player Steve Howard started the band — which draws its name from an eclectic mix of instruments and sounds — with clarinet and saxophone player Mike Sizer and trombone player Brad Herring. Howard explained to the Denton Record Chronicle in July 2003, “A gumbo is a mixture of all this stuff thrown in a pot. When we put this together, we were thinking about what we could do with clarinet, trumpet and trombone. I think we have a swing other groups don’t; this is what we put into the pot.”
Attendees are invited to a special pre-concert reception given by A Fiore Catering at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 for general admission and free to UTD students with valid identification. Special tickets for both the concert and reception are available for $30.
The concert is a joint effort between UTD’s School of Arts & Humanities and the Sammons Center for the Arts in Dallas.
Office hours for advance ticket purchase are from 2 to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday. To purchase tickets using Visa, MasterCard or Discover, please call 972-883-2552. More information about the concert can be found at http://ah.utdallas.edu/season0506/gumbokings.htm.
For information about the many musical, arts, theatre, dance and other performances and exhibitions held throughout the year at UTD, please call 972-UTD-ARTS (972-883-2787), e-mail [email protected], or visit the School of Arts and Humanities’ website at http://ah.utdallas.edu/. Persons with disabilities needing special accommodations may call 972-883-2982, Texas Relay Operator: 1-800-RELAYVV.
The University of Texas at Dallas, located at the convergence of Richardson, Plano and Dallas in the heart of the complex of major multinational technology corporations known as the Telecom Corridor®, enrolls nearly 14,500 students. The school’s freshman class traditionally stands at the forefront of Texas state universities in terms of average SAT scores. The university offers a broad assortment of bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs. For additional information about UTD, please visit the university’s website at www.utdallas.edu.