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Jazz in the Spring at the Nation’s Library

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Next week, the Music Division’s popular jazz film series returns to the Mary Pickford Theater.  Senior Reference Specialist and In the Muse blogger Larry Appelbaum curated the series and provided program notes.

Monday evenings at 7:00 pm – Mary Pickford Theater, 3rd Floor, James Madison Building. No tickets or reservations needed. Limited seating begins at 6:30pm. Programs subject to change without notice. For details or further information: [email protected] (202) 707-1848

Photograph by Max Weiss, courtesy of

April 4

The Anatomy of Vince Guaraldi (2010) Directed by Andrew Thomas (116 mins)

In 1963, Vince Guaraldi and Ralph J. Gleason (co-founder of Rolling Stone magazine and the Monterey Jazz Festival) collaborated on a film that offered a unique perspective on how Vince’s classic song “Cast Your Fate To The Wind” crossed over from the jazz world to the pop charts. This rare footage, unavailable for more than 40 years, has been restored in high definition and fully expanded to continue Vince’s story through the 1960s and 70s – from his well known scores for the Charlie Brown animated TV specials, to the groundbreaking Jazz Mass at Grace Cathedral, and his legendary appearances at the Hungry i, the Trident, El Matador and the Monterey Jazz Festival. Featuring previously unknown Guaraldi filmed performances (recently discovered from private collectors) plus rare, unpublished studio recordings from Vince’s personal library; The Anatomy of Vince Guaraldi also includes intimate comments and original performances from Dave Brubeck, Dick Gregory, George Winston, Jon Hendricks and others.

William Cepeda, courtesy Louise Ernst.

April 18

El Trombone de Bomba, William Cepeda’s Jazz (2002) Directed by Louise Ernst (65 mins)

Trombonist, composer and educator William Cepeda is a cultural icon of Puerto Rico, who in the early 1990s began to blend world music and modern jazz, with traditional Afro-Puerto Rican roots music and dance. This documentary follows Cepeda back and forth between New York and his home town of Loiza to focus on his experiments in bomba jazz and the role his music plays in his two communities. Cepeda’s band is shown in the studio and features stars of both salsa and jazz, including soloists Yomo Toro, Miguel Zenón and Donny McCaslin. Special guest William Cepeda will introduce the film and take questions following the screening.

Courtesy of Lawrence Kraman

April 25

David Amram: The First 80 Years (2011) Directed by Lawrence Kraman (90 mins)

The subject of Lawrence Kraman’s documentary (seen here as a sneak preview/work-in-progress) is composer and multi-instrumentalist David Amram, who at age 80 continues to break ground in the worlds of jazz, classical, and world music. As a jazz French horn player, Amram worked with Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk, Dizzy Gillespie, Tito Puente, Miles Davis and many others. In the classical world he has composed more than 100 orchestral and chamber music works and has written many scores for theater and film, including the original The Manchurian Candidate, Splendor in the Grass, and the legendary beat generation film Pull My Daisy. Special guests David Amram and Lawrence Kraman will introduce the film and take questions following the screening.

Press inquiries: (202) 707-1848

Public inquiries: (202) 707-5502

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