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Jazz Classical Music in Sedona and Beyond

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The cream-colored cliffs and vermilion spires of Sedona will reverberate with classical music and jazz as the Red Rocks Music Festival opens Saturday and continues through Aug. 31.

Typically, summer music festivals are staged in a beautiful area with cooler weather. Sedona is so unique and beautiful, even if it isn't quite as cool as other places, it's still the perfect location. They aren't always distinct styles of music. Sometimes the elements of one can influence or be ingrained into the other, like with the music of (George) Gershwin and (Astor) Piazzolla.
Moshe Bukshpan-organizer

This year marks the seventh anniversary of the festival. Bukshpan started the event to enhance cultural opportunities in Arizona. Although its primary focus is classical music, he has incorporated jazz into the mix for the past several years.

This year's festival will feature “Classical Meets Jazz," a performance featuring jazz and classical musicians from Arizona State University and explores the works of the aforementioned composers.

The festival also includes an ambitious program titled “Music Under Totalitarian Regime," a multimedia performance that focuses on art and music from the Holocaust and the Soviet Union.

“The first half will feature slides of artwork created in the concentration camps, with people reading poetry as well," Bukshpan said. “The second half will be Russian works created under communism, especially Shostakovich. He despised the regime, and that comes out in his music. It's very dear to myself and many of the musicians involved because our families went through the horrors of the Holocaust."

And if fuel prices and busy schedules prevent a road trip to enjoy the Red Rocks Music Festival, don't worry. Next week, the festival is hosting several performances in Anthem and across the Valley.

“We want to make the music more accessible and affordable to people across the state," Bukshpan said. “We understand that many people won't be able to travel to the shows, so we are bringing the shows into the communities in the Valley."

This story appears courtesy of All About Jazz.
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