Thursday, July 3, 2008

In the arena at Monterey Jazz

You can have a great time at Monterey Jazz with just a grounds pass, seeing artists on at least five side stages. But you need an arena pass to see the festival's headline concerts. Ticket holders from previous years have first dibs on their last year's seats, or have a chance to move up.

New buyers always have an opportunity to get into the arena, but the seats always sell out well in advance. So this is a good time to be making plans to get your arena passes for the September 19-21 event.

Keep in mind that arena passes are sold for the full festival only. No single session tickets are available.

The arena lineup has plenty of highlights. Sunday night sets by Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter will follow a celebration of the collaboration between John Coltrane and vocalist Johnny Hartman. Another big tribute comes Saturday night, with Nancy Wilson, Terrance Blanchard and Tom Scott remembering the great Cannonball Adderly.

Other arena highlights include modernist Joshua Redman, vocalist Cassandra Wilson in her MJF debut, a funk jazz program with Ledisi and Maceo Parker, and various performances by artist in residence Christian McBride with various festival orchestras and a commissioned composer.

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