Friend's Of Chick Corea Dazzle

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Friend's of Chick Corea spirited listeners with jazz classics livened up by young performers during a recent performance. 

The ensemble was a mélange of young performers as well as past performers Corea toured with. The two pianist of the evening were 17-year-olds Beka Gochiashvili of Tblisi, Georgia and Gadi Lehavi of Tel-Aviv, Israel.  Both were brought to Corea’s attention after he kept receiving links to their Youtube videos --thanks to social media for facilitating the connection.The injection of youth was just what the performance needed. Beka Gochiashvili performed a mesmerizing rendition of Corea’s  “Windows”. He confidently glided through the piece. His manipulation of the tempo created a constant state of surprise. The middle of the piece felt like a dreamy waltz and the end pattered out like a slow drizzle after a thunderstorm.  Both young pianists bursts with so much energy that their bodies moved along to the pieces of music; at some points the musicians even stood up slightly.

While the pianists were quite a gem to watch on the stage, it was Marcus Gilmore at drums who held full attention. His performances and presence on stage even captivated his fellow performers. As he moved through a controlled and passionate drum solo all other performers turned and looked at him.  The drums, at points, sounded like skilled dancers sweeping the floor gently and then like a solemn funeral march.

Throughout the whole performance it was obvious how much the musicians on stage enjoyed what they did. They smiled at each other as one performer walked on stage; there was the occasional fist-bumping. Whether they were performing solos or sheet music there was a consistent passion. A passion that was as evident as saxophonist Ravi Coltrane swayed, and propelled himself forward and backwards, while letting rich full notes sing out of his instrument. 

John Patitucci seemed to be overcome with joy as he spent most of the evening hovering energetically over his bass. The passion though never gave way to loss of control. Showing true mastery, every single note was controlled and measured.

 The evening showed the magic of jazz. The sumptuous mix of improvisation, passion and control.  The backdrop of New York City traffic fit perfectly. Just like the traffic the performance was controlled and orderly but moved with a passionate fever. 

 

The red backlights of cars burned as brilliantly as the musicians' gliding their fingers over their instruments. 

The venue: the incomparable Jazz At Lincoln Center's Rose Theater.

 

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