The Athenaeum hosts a special holiday jazz concert in the Music Room of the library, featuring a trio of leading European jazz artists from Norway – vocalist Solveig Slettahjell, pianist Tord Gustavsen, and trumpeter Sjur Miljeteig on Sunday, Dec. 5, 2010 7:30 p.m.
For four nights in the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, the three artists combined to record a program of well known and lesser known Christmas hymns in Norwegian, Swedish, and English. The resulting CD, Natt i Betlehem (Night in Bethlehem), exquisitely blends Slettahjell's beautiful and evocative voice with Gustavsen's lyrical keyboard touch and Miljeteig’s hauntingly muted trumpet.
Athenaeum jazz-goers will remember the stunning 2008 debut of Gustavsen's trio at the library, a performance that echoed the words of London's Observer, which called him “a pianist of a poetic cast, a lucid soloist with a sure sense of melodic structure and an often astonishing lyrical imagination.” Slettahjell provides a perfect match to Gustavsen with her “Slow Motion” concept of improvisation, “effortlessly suspend(ing) lyrics in mid-air, a high-wire act where every note is held as she explores its timbral density for expressivity and nuance” (The Independent). Through Gustavsen's subtle arrangements, the trio evokes the hush and intimacy of a winter’s night and reveals the emotional power of traditional Christmas songs as never before.
Price: $19 members/$24 nonmembers
Location: Athenaeum Music & Arts Library, 1008 Wall Street, La Jolla Google Map