Jazz on the Green at Midtown Crossing!

Fireworks, Parachutes And Free Dance Lessons Highlight 2014 Series

 Omaha Performing Arts will again present Jazz on the Green at Midtown Crossing this summer. The free outdoor concert series will run six consecutive Thursdays, from July 10 to August 14, 2014, and is located in the idyllic Turner Park in the heart of Midtown Crossing. Concerts will begin at 7:30 p.m. on the permanent stage of The Pavilion at Turner Park. The lawn is open beginning at 5 p.m. every Thursday, except for July 17 when it opens after the United States Navy Parachute Team lands at Turner Park at 5:45 p.m. 
A new addition to Jazz on the Green will be free dance lessons before two of the performances. Omaha Ballroom, under the direction of Elizabeth Edwards, will offer free dance lessons prior to the performances on July 24 (salsa dancing) and August 7 (swing dance). Lessons will begin at 6:45 p.m. and will last 30 minutes.

The soul/funk Omaha band The 9s will start the Jazz on the Green season off on July 10. The 9s consists of Jason Birnstihl, guitar and lead vocals; Mitch Towne, keyboards and vocals; Craig Balderston, bass guitar and vocals; and Dan Maca, drums. The quartet combines elements of funk, rock, and pop to create a unique sound.

The seven-piece Great Lakes Horizons Navy Band will perform a mix of blues, jazz and funk on July 17. The lawn opens late for this performance, allowing for the United States Navy Parachute Team, commonly known as the Leap Frogs, to make a special appearance arriving by air into Turner Park at 5:45 p.m. The lawn will open after the Leap Frogs’ arrival. The band performs at 7:30 p.m., with fireworks, provided by Midtown Crossing, following the concert.

Cuban Big Band Conjunto Chappottin Y Sus Estrellas will bring festive Latin jazz to the series on July 24. Founded in the 1940s, the band is considered one of the most renowned “Son” bands in Cuba today, according to Latin Pulse Music. Free salsa dance lessons will begin at 6:45 p.m.

Fans of New Orleans-style jazz will want to come out for Big Sam’s Funky Nation concert on July 31. Big Sam Williams leads the band, playing a blend of funk, rock, hip-hop, jazz and R&B punctuated by brass harmonies of the trombone and trumpet. Big Sam got his start playing with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, before becoming a band leader.

Bringing traditional and contemporary sounds of Big Bands will be Sing, Sing, Swing Orchestra on August 7. Led by pianist Robert Glaser, the local ensemble features 12 members, including two vocalists, who perform the music of Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Pancho Sanchez and more. Free swing dance lessons will begin at 6:45 p.m.

The legendary New Orleans band, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, will perform the final show of the season on August 14. Since 1977, the six-man group has sought to reinvigorate New Orleans brass standards through their style of “musical gumbo” as band members like to describe their style.

All Jazz on the Green at Midtown Crossing concerts are free to the public, with no reservations or tickets needed. Turner Park opens at 5:00 p.m. (except for July 17) and performances start at 7:30 p.m. Midtown Crossing offers convenient and secure parking for more than 3,000 vehicles. Two parking garages are easily accessible from 33rd, Farnam and Harney streets. In both garages, the first three hours are free and visitors pay only $1 for each hour thereafter (with a maximum fee of $6). Ample metered parking is available along Farnam Street. Metered parking is short-term (max. two hours) and is monitored Monday Friday from 8:00 a.m. 5:00 p.m.


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