Festival Hall, Greensboro’s premier arts venue and cultural center, presents next month, the third of four shows in its 2023 Jazz Legacy Project series: Johnny Mercer, From Savannah to Hollywood.
A Savannah native, Mercer’s ability to write some of the most colorful and indelible lyrics in American popular music landed him in the lap of Hollywood during the golden age of movies, where he co-founded Capitol Records.
“When we close our eyes and imagine the soundtrack to 1950’s Hollywood, it’s Johnny Mercer that we hear in our heads,” Jazz Legacy Project bandleader and drummer Justin Varnes said.
Each Jazz Legacy Project program is roughly 90 minutes, with the aim of bringing the casual jazz listener into the minds and music of the most influential and interesting American musicians of all time. The life and music of the artist/composer is entertainingly narrated by Varnes, and seminal jazz pieces are played to illuminate the narration. Note that these are not tribute concerts in the sense that the musicians are trying to recreate the original performances, but instead performances to celebrate the essence and accomplishments of the particular artist.
The Jazz Legacy Project
Johnny Mercer, From Savannah to Hollywood will begin at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 24, with tickets starting at $22 for general admission. For tickets and more information, visit festivalhallga.com.
This program is sponsored in part by Visit Lake Oconee (visitlakeoconee.com) and Charles Miller Companies. Sponsorship opportunities remain available for The Jazz Legacy Project Series. Please email Nicole Chillemi at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 762-243- 8022 for more information.