New York City folk/jazz musician Lucy (Lucine) Yeghiazaryan is performing at the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts in Burnaby on Sunday, Dec. 1 as part of the day-long Jazz Walk at the Shadbolt, featuring 11 different ensembles, with musicians from South Carolina, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Kansas City as well as a strong local contingent of Vancouver’s finest.
Yeghiazaryan “grew up in post-Soviet Armenia and began playing the violin at the age of seven, when she also discovered her father’s once-contraband collection of jazz records. Since electricity was intermittent, Lucy could only eke out short periods of listening, but the collection of jazz standards so captivated young Lucy that years before she ever learned to speak English, she began singing the tunes by meticulously mimicking the sounds and styles of the likes of Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan.
“This early dedication to music led Lucy to the Armenian capital of Yerevan, where she performed, entered vocal competitions, and joined the National Armenian Jazz Orchestra. Then, soon after Armenia’s economic collapse in 2000, Lucy’s parents brought her and her three sisters to America.”
The Shadbolt notes that “since immigrating to the United States in 2001, Yeghiazaryan has been an active member of the jazz community in and outside of the country. As a teenager she attended NJPAC’s Jazz for Teens programs under the direction of Don Braden on a full scholarship. She graduated from William Paterson University with a degree in Jazz Performance. In addition to her work as a straight-ahead jazz vocalist, Yeghiazaryan plays violin and sings in the acapella group YY Sisters who perform medieval Armenian/ modern folk music and enjoy wide recognition within the Armenian community. She served as a resident vocalist for the National Armenian Jazz Orchestra for various performance seasons and was one of the ten finalists selected for the prestigious International Monk Jazz Competition in 2015. Her debut record, Blue Heaven, came out on Cellar Music in July, 2019.”
Yeghiazaryan leads a regular Tuesday session at Mezzrow Jazz Club and has a monthly residency at the historic Showman’s Jazz Club in Harlem with her organ trio.
Musicians scheduled for Jazz Walk at the Shadbolt on Sunday include international headliners such as organist Chris Hazelton, drummer Roy McCurdy and tenor saxophonists Grant Stewart and Stephen Riley as well as Maya Rae, The Dave Robbins Sextet, The Brad Turner Quintet, Dawn Pemberton Quartet, Grant Stewart Trio, Cory Weeds Quintet, Steve Kaldestad Quintet, Alyssa Allgood, Stephen Riley/Ernest Turner and The Jill Townsend Jazz Orchestra featuring organist Chris Hazelton doing selections from Jimmy Smith’s Christmas Cookin’ album from 1966.
In addition to the performances there will be roundtable discussions with archival record producer Zev Feldman, radio DJ Jim Wilke, a Jazz 101 session with Alan Matheson and a preview of an upcoming book about jazz musicians in Vancouver by Chris Wong.
Sunday, Dec. 1 set times:
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Maya Rae
11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Dave Robbins Sextet
Noon – 1:15 Lucine Yeghiazaryan
1:30 – 2:45 Dawn Pemberton Quartet Sings Etta Jones
1:45 – 3:00 Brad Turner Quintet
2:00 – 3:15 Grant Stewart Trio
3:30 – 4:45 Cory Weeds Quintet Featuring Roy Mccurdy
3:45 – 5:00 Steve Kaldestad / Grant Stewart Play Lockjaw & Griffin
4:00 – 5:15 Alyssa Allgood
6:30 – 7:45 Stephen Riley / Ernest Turner
7:00 – 8:15 Chris Hazelton / Jill Townsend Jazz Orchestra Play Jimmy Smith Christmas Cookin’ and more.
8:30 – 9:45 Stephen Riley / Ernest Turner
9:00 – 10:15 Chris Hazelton / Jill Townsend Jazz Orchestra Play Jimmy Smith Christmas Cookin’ and more.
Tickets: Adult $50, Student (with valid ID) $30. Tickets include all performances, with seating on a first come basis.
Shadbolt Centre for the Arts, 6450 Deer Lake Avenue, Burnaby.