The sixth season of the Jazz in the Sanctuary concert series will begin on Sunday, November 17, at 3:00pm. The series combines contemporary jazz performance with the neo-Romanesque beauty and acoustic splendor of Fountain Street Church in downtown Grand Rapids.
For each concert in the series, guest performers join Robin Connell, series host and accomplished jazz musician herself, onstage for more than an hour of music and light conversation. A large projection screen displays the performers in detail, and Connell often invites audience members to ask questions.
The November 17 concert will feature vocalist Ashley Daneman and her husband, trumpeter Benje Daneman.
Ashley Daneman, originally from Ohio, honed her singing voice in Washington, D.C., and New York City, earning her master’s degree from the prestigious Manhattan School of Music. Her original music, which can be heard on Bandcamp and other online platforms, has drawn comparisons to Becca Stevens, Laura Nyro, and even Stephen Sondheim.
Benje Daneman got his professional start in 2007 with the Doc Severinsen Big Band and now performs and records with his band SearchParty. He has co-founded and directed multiple educational programs including the Jazz & Creative Institute (JCI), Kalamazoo Youth Jazz Orchestra, Kalamazoo Trumpet Workshop, and JazzStart Summer Jazz Workshop.
Connell received West Michigan Jazz Society’s 2017 “Musician of the Year” award for her widespread collaboration with area jazz artists and her work on this series. She performs regularly throughout West Michigan, often with her husband, trombonist and educator Paul Brewer. She is currently planning this season’s second Jazz in the Sanctuary event, which will feature pianist Lisa Sung.
General admission to each Jazz in the Sanctuary concert is $15 online or at the door. Students admission is $5 with a valid school ID. Please visit fountainstreet.org/jazz.