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Conversations with creators and organizers of the arts scene in West Michigan, hosted by Cara Lieurance

Big Band Christmas: Scott Cowan leads Battle Creek Symphony & guests, featuring Faith Quashie

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Faith Quashie

The Battle Creek Symphony's Big Band Christmas will be led by guest conductor Scott Cowan, who also wrote several fresh holiday arrangements for the concert. It's set for 7:30 pm on Saturday, Dec 10 at W.K. Kellogg Auditorium. Faith Quashie, a young jazz vocalist who spent four years as a performer and producer with WMU's Gold Company, is the featured vocalist. Cowan has also included internationally-known jazz players like bassist John Webber, pianist Xavier Davis, and saxophonist Ted Hogarth, among others.

In a conversation with Cara Lieurance, Cowan and Quashie talk about Cowan's new arrangements of holiday favorites like "O Holy Night," and "You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch." He says he put "Jingle Bells" into a style-blender of tango, swing, funk and more in the concert-opener. One of the big highlights is a big band masterpiece: Billy Strayhorn's setting of "The Nutcracker Suite," originally recorded by the Duke Ellington Orchestra in 1960.

Tickets and more information are available at the Battle Creek Symphony website.

Cara Lieurance covers local music with live morning interviews, and produces WMUK's Let's Hear It weekday mornings at 10 am Mon-Fri, showcasing local interviews and performances. She also produces The Pure Drop, an hour of Celtic music, with musician Dave Marlatt.
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