Houston Symphony Presents Jazz, Love & Gershwin: A Century of Rhapsody in Blue

Style Magazine Newswire | 1/18/2024, 2:35 p.m.
The Houston Symphony celebrates Valentine’s Day by welcoming the world-renowned Marcus Roberts Trio and Grammy Award-winning jazz singer Catherine Russell …
Cat Russell

The Houston Symphony celebrates Valentine’s Day by welcoming the world-renowned Marcus Roberts Trio and Grammy Award-winning jazz singer Catherine Russell to join Principal POPS Conductor Steven Reineke and the orchestra for Jazz, Love & Gershwin: A Century of Rhapsody in Blue. Friday, February 2 through Sunday, February 4 at Jones Hall. Reineke, the Houston Symphony, the Marcus Roberts Trio, and Russell perform timeless love songs by George Gershwin, including “Our Love is Here to Stay,” “Embraceable You,” “The Man I Love,” and “I Got Rhythm.” And, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the work’s premiere, the Houston Symphony performs Ferde Grofé’s orchestral adaptation of his original orchestration of Gershwin’s iconic Rhapsody in Blue alongside jazz piano sensation Marcus Roberts. Guests can look forward to a livestream performance on Saturday, February 3.

Jason Marsalis

Jason Marsalis

Graceful and enchanting, jazz singer Catherine Russell has enjoyed a long and prosperous musical career. In 2006, her debut album World Village/Harmonia Mundi garnered rave reviews, and just a few years later she went on to produce Inside This Heart of Mine (2010), which topped the charts on JazzWeek, Roots Music Report radio charts, and Billboard. Her fourth album, Strictly Romancin’ (2012), was awarded Prix du Jazz Vocal (Vocal Album of The Year). In 2012, she won a Grammy Award as a featured artist on the soundtrack album for the HBO-TV series, Boardwalk Empire. Her fifth solo album, Bring It Back (2014), was released worldwide on the Jazz Village label, receiving a Five Star Review in Downbeat Magazine. Later albums, Harlem on My Mind (2017) and Alone Together (2019) received several Grammy nominations.

Known for their enthralling stage presence, the Marcus Roberts Trio captivates audiences with their innovative spin on jazz trio performance. The trio features pianist Marcus Roberts, drummer Jason Marsalis, and bassist Rodney Jordan. Blind since childhood, Roberts attended Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind in St. Augustine, Florida, the alma mater of Ray Charles, and started playing the piano when he was only five years old. He has since founded a band, created several successful albums, and joined the faculty at Florida State University.

Now Roberts joins the Symphony to perform George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue (1924), a captivating and controversial musical composition that challenged the confines of symphonic traditions in its premiere.

Martin Jaffe

Martin Jaffe

Guests can extend their experience and join the Houston Symphony at the Round Bar for an Encore After Party immediately following the Saturday evening performance. Ticketholders will enjoy dancing with live music by DJ Mr. Simmer Down, the specialty “Rhapsody in Blue” cocktail, free swag, and mingling with Houston Symphony musicians. For tickets and more information, call 713.224.7575 or visit houstonsymphony.org/gershwin.


Friday, February 2, 2024 at 8 p.m.

Saturday, February 3, 2024 at 8 p.m.

Livestream performance on Saturday, February 3, 2024

Sunday, February 4, 2024 at 2:30 p.m.

Steven Reineke, conductor

Marcus Roberts, piano

Jason Marsalis, drums

Martin Jaffe, bass

Catherine Russell, vocalist