See the previous week's performances.  March 22-March 29, 2010 See the next week's performances.

See the previous week's performances. March, 2010 See the next week's performances.
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* Cover is given where known

* There is a one-drink
minimum per set
* Reservations for shows downstairs can only be made by phone:


Paintings by EDWARD CHING

All art is for sale. Please inquire

Mar 22
Paul Hecht, presenter

Bel Kaufman, author of Up the Down Staircase;  Isaiah Sheffer, artistic director of Symphony Space;  George Guidall, a golden voice in the audiobook industry;  Art Bailey, pianist and accordionist ;  Tanya Kalmanovitch, violist and violinist
Happy Birthday Sholem Aleichem  image
Tonight's occasion is the 150th birthday of one of the world's most beloved writers.

BEL KAUFMAN grew up in Russia, learned English at age twelve, and went on to a distinguished literary, academic, and teaching career. She has won many awards for her writing and public speaking, addressing educators and students here and abroad. She is the granddaughter of the celebrated Yiddish humorist Sholem Aleichem.

ISAIAH SHEFFER is a co-founder and Artistic Director of Symphony Space where he directs and hosts the popular public radio series, SELECTED SHORTS:A CELEBRATION OF THE SHORT STORY, as well as the THALIA FOLLIES POLITICAL CABARET, and the annual James Joyce extravaganza, BLOOMSDAY ON BROADWAY. As a child, he performed with the great Maurice Schwartz in the Yiddish Art Theatre, and in Yiddish theatre versions of Isaac Bashevis Singer plays. He is the author of the librettos for the musicals THE RISE OF DAVID LEVINSKY, YIDDLE WITH A FIDDLE, and a play about Singer entitled DREAMERS AND DEMONS. During some of his misspent youth he was the English-language announcer on the Yiddish radio station WEVD, where he managed to create the only existing Yiddish Halloween song, "BOO, BOO, HAINT IZ HALLOVEEN".

GEORGE GUIDALL has recorded over 900 unabridged novels. Audiofile Magazine named him one of the original golden voices in the audiobook industry. Guidall’s forty-five year career as a performer includes leading roles in regional theatre and Broadway, an Obie Award for best performance Off-Broadway, and numerous appearances on film and television.

Pianist and accordionist Art Bailey is active in the improvised and world music scenes, and has appeared with such diverse musical performers as jazz saxophonist Steve Lacy, classical violinist Itzhak Perlman, and renowned bluegrass musician Del McCoury. Art has been the pianist with the Klezmer Conservatory Band since 1998, contributing new arrangements to the band’s repertoire and making stage and television appearances worldwide.

Canadian violist and violinist Tanya Kalmanovitch operates at the intersection of contemporary jazz, classical music and free improvisation. Since moving to New York in 2004, she has fast made a name for herself in the city's jazz and improvised music scene. In 2004 she was named "Best New Talent"by All About Jazz New York, and Time Out New York described her as "the Juilliard-trained violist who's been tearing up the scene."
 Cover $10

Frank J. Oteri, host

Phil Fried Anna Brandsoy Jill Dawe
21st Century schizoid music presents: Phil Fried image
Phil Fried: composer, performer, improvisor, blogger, writer, humorist, educator – not necessarily in that order.

Phil comes from a noted musical family. His father, Louis Fried, was an original cast member in several Broadway shows including Brigadoon and Carousel. His cousin was the noted composer Isadore Freed. Second to music is Phil's passionate interest in literature. He has written several texts and librettos including the text for his opera, The Dungeon of Esmeralda, and an adaptation of Hemingway's short story, “The Snows of Kilimanjaro.” In 2006 he received a Centennial Commission from the Minnesota Orchestra. He was a 2008 McKnight Foundation Fellow grantee. Most recently Phil became the composer in residence and core member for Opera Bob, a new music collaborative in Minnesota.

As a Jazz musician, Phil was a founding member of the New York Artists Collective. Performing with Ray Nance was his first professional jazz experience in the 1970's. He has performed all over the United States. More info: and

Anna Brandsoy’s recent operatic roles include Mimi (La Bohème), the Governess (The Turn of the Screw), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Elle (La Voix Humaine), Giulietta (Les Contes d’Hoffmann), Lady Billows (Albert Herring), and Ariadne (Ariadne auf Naxos). She spent two summers training and performing in Europe, the first at the world-famous Mozarteum and the second in the Tyrolean region of Austria, and holds a D.M.A. in voice performance from the University of Minnesota. This summer, she performed at the Minnesota Fringe Festival in “Opera Bob’s” premiere show, Secret’s Revealed! In addition to opera, Ms. Brandsoy is an avid recitalist, recently featured in Samuel Barber’s Hermit Songs, a new arrangement of Maurice Ravel’s Scheherezade, and as the soprano soloist in Poulenc’s Gloria with Exultate Orchestra. Dedicated to the performance of new music, she has had the pleasure of premiering several of Phil Fried’s pieces.

Jill Dawe is a native of Newfoundland and a graduate of Eastman School of Music. Active as a soloist, chamber musician and teacher, she lives and works in the Twin Cities and is an associate professor of music at Augsburg College in Minneapolis.

Tonight's performance represents the many sides of Phil as a free improvisor and as a composer. Along with improvisation I present three different styles of my notated vocal music; my Operas and complete song cycles are not included.
Serious and serial songs
Cabaret songs in popular style
Humorous Arias composed in the style of other composers.

"After working 10 years on my opera The Snow's of Kilimanjaro I was in the mood for funny.

I found my voice as a solo instrumentalist performing on an upright electric bass. The sound is amplified/unamplified, processed/unprocessed, and mixed via touch and foot pedals in real time. The “soundscapes” I create are explore many angles of experimental music. My approach is non tonal, as in my composed music, but its effect is more intimate and personal. It was critical for me that my first explorations into non-extended tonal materials were with jazz music. I have come full circle and have returned to improvisation after the careful study of composed music and classical string bass technique." -Phil Fried
 Cover $10

Mar 23
Autumn Giles & Maritn Rock, hosts

Jimin Seo, Columbia University;  Caitlin Thomson, Sarah Lawrence College;  Jason Baker, Hunter;  Scott Reding, NYU

 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)
Wednesday Mar 24 6:00PM  PERFECT SENSE
Alissa Heyman & Hila Ratzabi, co-host

Sharon Dolin Rocco de Giacomo Jacob Scheier Florencia Varela

 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)
Vincent Chancey, french horn;  Steve Bloom, guitar;  Lindsey Horner, bass;  Jeremy Carlstedt, drums
Phat Chance image
Phat Chance is a quartet lead by Jazz French horn player, Vincent Chancey. Chancey has been leading many groups over the past 20 years. This is his latest. The group swings with with the rhythm of compositions of Latin and Brazilian music, some his compositions and some by others. Phat Chance is always a surprise for jazz lovers.

"Vincent Chancey is the greatest living French horn player in Jazz"
-Ron Sweetman, CKCU-FM

Mar 25
Lucinda Karter, host

Bilingual, cross cultural.

La Théorie du Panda/The Panda Theory by Pascal Garnier

Selon toute vraisemblance/In All Likelihood by Laurent Graff

Mais le fleuve tuera l'homme blanc /And the River Will Kill the White Man by Patrick Besson

 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)

Myra Melford, piano;  Jenny Scheinman, violin;  Todd Sickafoose, bass;  Allison Miller, drums
Allison Miller's BOOM TIC BOOM CD Release Party image
“Allison is a refreshingly honest player. She plays as she is, which is great because she is such an open-hearted, humble, graceful person.”
– Ani DiFranco
 Cover $10
Mar 26
Jackie Sheeler, host

Son of Pony image
The Friday night legendary open mic poetry series.

Arrive before 6 pm to sign up.

Bowery Poetry Books author ("The Poetry Dollars") and performer of poetry ("The Monotone," CD from Artsider Studios) Paul L. Mills a k a Poez has been called at different times by The New York Times "a sonic fantasia" and "a spoken-word pioneer." He began in the late 70s performing classic and original poetry in the streets of Harvard Square and Manhattan, soon performing in cafes, clubs, theaters, concert halls, on radio and television, opening for the likes of William Burroughs, Richard Hell, and Mose Allison -- all long before "spoken word poetry" became fashionable. Thirty years later, the verdict of Le Figaro (Paris) still applies: "etonnant et imprevu."
 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)

John McNeil, trumpet;  Bill Mchenry, tenor saxophone;  Billy Hart, drums;  Ethan Iverson, piano;  Matt Penman, bass
Hot & Cool: NEC Jazz 40th: John McNeil-Bill McHenry Quintet image
9 & 10:30PM
Hot & Cool: NEC Jazz 40th and the Cornelia Street Café
present the John McNeil-Bill McHenry Quartet featuring the legendary jazz drummer Billy Hart and pianist Ethan Iverson of the Bad Plus, and Matt Penman, bass. Both McNeil and Hart are faculty icons at NEC and McHenry is a ’91 grad.

“Mr. McNeil, a trumpeter, and Mr. McHenry, a tenor saxophonist, hail from different generations but share an attraction to unfettered harmonic terrain.”
— Nate Chinen, New York Times “A mix of wit and glee is fetching—one reason why this multi-generational trumpet-tenor team has seemed so inspired of late.”
— Jim Macnie, Village Voice

John McNeil is one of the most original and creative jazz artists in the world today. For over three decades John has toured with his own groups and has received widespread acclaim as both a player and composer. His highly personal trumpet style communicates across the full range of contemporary jazz, and his compositions combine harmonic freedom with melodic accessibility. John's restless experimentation has kept him on the cutting edge of new music and has kept him from being easily categorized.

Billy Hart is widely regarded as one of the most capable of modern-jazz drummers; he is equally at home in electronic and rock-influenced styles, in free jazz, and in bop. He's played with a veritable who's who of jazz - everyone from Shirley Horn to Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock to Larry Coryell and is featured on over 500 CDs.

Saxophonist/composer Bill McHenry is known for his melodic/free form composing and improvising. As New York Times critic Ben Ratliff writes: "There are tons of young jazz saxophonists out there pursuing ideas of harmony and structure and rhythm, but he has something rare going for him. He has a sound. Mr. McHenry is a fresh new voice. Lyrical is probably the most overused word in jazz criticism, but if anyone deserves the word, Mr. McHenry is the one."

Ethan Iverson is most widely known as a member of the groundbreaking trio The Bad Plus. Prior to TBP, he was the musical director for the Mark Morris Dance Group and has worked with Dave Douglas, Dewey Redman, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Billy Hart, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Mark Turner, Yo-Yo Ma, Mark Padmore, Paul Motian and Charlie Haden.

Matt Penman hails from Auckland, New Zealand. Residing in New York, he is currently an established member of the SFJazz Collective. He also performs regularly with John Scofield; in his trio-plus-horns formation, and in a quartet with Joe Lovano and Matt Wilson and the Joshua Redman trio. Past collaborators and projects include Kurt Rosenwinkel’s Heartcore band, Kenny Werner, Brad Mehldau, Chris Cheek, Brian Blade, Seamus Blake, Wolfgang Muthspiel, Mark Turner, Guillermo Klein, Rebecca Martin, Eric Truffaz, Nicholas Payton, and from 2004-2006 he toured extensively with the singer Madeleine Peyroux.

This performance is part of a week-long New York celebration of NEC’s first-in-the-nation Jazz Studies program. With a faculty that has included 5 MacArthur "genius" grant winners and 4 NEA Jazz Masters, and alumni that reads like a who’s who of jazz, NEC’s Jazz Studies Program has spawned numerous Grammy winning composers and performers. As Mike West writes in JazzTimes: “Four decades after its founding, NEC’s jazz studies department is among the most acclaimed and successful in the world; so says the roster of visionary artists that have comprised both its faculty and alumni.”
 Cover $10

Mar 27
Andy Christie

PETER LUBELL, IFC; NPR;  MARGOT LEITMAN, Stripped Stories;  ANDY CHRISTIE, NPR; Moth GrandSlam Champion;  PETER AGUERO, The Moth GrandSlam Champion
Seek Truth. Get a T-Shirt.

4 Storytellers, 3 True Stories, 1 Pack of Lies.

Uncover the liar and win a prize worth its weight in fool's gold.
 Cover $15 (includes one house drink)

9:00PM & 10:30PM  ANAT FORT TRIO
Anat Fort, piano, composer;  Gary Wang, bass;  Lieven Venken, drums
Anat Fort Trio image
“Fresh from mixing her new trio record in Oslo, Anat Fort returns to the beloved basement of Cornelia St. Café. This festive event features with with long time trio member Gary Wang on bass, and relatively new collaborator Lieven Venken on drums. And the material: her oldies and newbies compositions with the usual ever-growing space for improvisation”.
 Cover $10
Mar 28
Special guests Stanley Moss Nina Cassian Isaiah Sheffer Maurice Edwards Christina Sunnerstam
Rock and Dew by Carmen Firan (Selected Poems, Sheep Meadow Press, 2010).

translations from Romanian by Adam J. Sorkin, Andrei Codrescu and Isaiah Sheffer

“Carmen Firan has many voice —almost a choir—which she controls equally, be they lyrical or realistically uttered, ideas turning to poetry, and poetry breathing ideas. That’s the strength and originality of her Rock and Dew.” - Nina Cassian

"Since moving to New York Carmen Firan has been writing poems that explore the New World with an exciting view of life, love, and the meaning of existence, through the eyes of a renowned East European poet.” - Andrei Codrescu

“Carmen Firan’s beautiful and powerful poems, charged with gloom and passion, recreate her struggles not only with life and love, with her history and ours (and ‘its bloody hangover of the senses’), but with the beasts of language, whether invasive or voracious or fugitive. In this war of words, armed with her ‘dialect of Old Angelic,’ she indisputably wins.”—Harry Mathews

CARMEN FIRAN, born in Romania, has published twenty books including poetry, novels, essays, and short stories. She has been living in New York since 2000. Her most recent book published in the US is Words & Flesh, Talisman Publishers.

 Cover $7 (includes one house drink)

Russ Johnson, trumpet & flugelhorn;  Krzysztof Medyna, saxophone;  Andrzej Winnicki, piano;  Don Falzone, bass;  Jeff Davis, drums
Komeda Project - Cd release party image
Join the as they celebrate the release of their second CD Requiem. Plenty has been written about European musicians approaching the American jazz tradition; it's far rarer to hear about American musicians bringing their heritage to distinctly European projects. Capitalizing on the critical acclaim for its debut Crazy Girl, pianist/composer/arranger Andrzej Winnicki and saxophonist Krzysztof Medyna - the driving force behind Komeda Project - bring trumpeter Russ Johnson back for their new CD Requiem. What makes Requiem different, however, and a significant evolution over Crazy Girl, is the enlistment of über-bassist Scott Colley and the equally ubiquitous drummer Nasheet Waits. The CD was released October 20 2009 on WM Records. Like Crazy Girl, Requiem's primary focus is to bring the music of the late, legendary Polish film composer/jazz pianist Krzysztof Komeda (Rosemary’s Baby; Knife in the Water; Fearless Vampire Killers, among others) into the new millennium with fresh arrangements, but this time the approach is far more open-ended - a record of unmistakably European jazz played with the swing and unmistakable conviction of an American rhythm section. With Requiem, Komeda Project ups the ante on the promise of Crazy Girl on a program of boldly thematic and challenging charts that still possess the underlying freedom required to encourage unpredictability, even within the most scripted of arrangements and paying reverent homage to one of the 20th Century's great composers while bringing modernistic edge, reckless abandon, and unmistakable swing to this profoundly moving set of starkly beautiful music.
• website info:
 Cover $10
Mar 29
Lady Got Chops Women’s Month Music and Art Festival image
The Lady Got Chops Women’s Month Music and Art Festival

8:30 vocalist Keisha St. Joan with Bertha Hope, piano
10pm vocalist Candace Jones with Jessica Jones and friends

Performing since she was four, the now 27-year-old Candace Jones has an array of awards and accomplishments behind her in classical, jazz and R&B music. Candace counts among her influences John Coltrane, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn and Stevie Wonder among others. Born in New York City and raised in the jazz-rich culture of California’s Bay Area, she won local talent competitions and by the age of 11, secured a seat with the highly heralded Young Musicians program in the University of California where she trained as a classical vocalist. By the time she was 18, Candace had garnering a slew of accolades including full scholarships to Berklee and Stanford Jazz Camps, a first place award from the NAACP Act-So competition in classical voice, membership in the San Francisco Grammy® Choir, and a lead role in a 6-week professional musical in San Francisco (fulltime, while still attending high school).
Now, based out of Brooklyn, New York, Candace has been working in a variety of musical genres over the last 6 years, recording her own pop and R&B originals, starring in touring companies of Dream Girls, Ain’t Misbehavin’, Hair and Fame, and singing regularly with her parents band, The Jessica Jones Quartet, singing original music by Candace and other members of the family. The set at Cornelia Street will feature music of Jessica and Candace Jones as well as gems from the jazz canon.

“Her voice slinks around the words perfectly, her savvy recalling various significant jazz vocalists.”
-Michael P. Gladstone,

“...will take your breath away…”-

Keisha St. Joan
“When the great Lionel Hampton suggested that the unrivaled "Ella Fitzgerald move over", he meant just that! Because the charismatic Keisha St. Joan was gliding onto the jazz scene with her soothing, angelic, soul-captivating voice that conjures up the dreams pains and joy that only an angel can preside over..”
-Carole Leverett

Drum kit donated by

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Cover is given where known
Many spoken words events are free
There is always a one-drink minimum per set; times are door opening times