The four performances include
7 p.m.Sunday, July 24, Riverside Park (Rainsite is the Weber Center)
The opening concert features the band’s vocalists Cathy Reitz and Tim Henke. Henke will perform Stevie Wonder’s “For Once in My Life” and Paul Anka’s “Hello.” Reitz will perform in the Gospel/Funk Chart “Mercy Mercy Mercy” and Ella Fitzgerald’s version of the Wizard of Oz Classic, “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead.” The band will also premier an original arrangement of Cole Porter’s “All of You” by the orchestra’s resident saxophonist and composer Jeff Reitz.
7 p.m.Friday, July 29, 300 Pearl St.
La Crosse “Summer Days” festival presents the Downtown Street Dance. The band will perform dance classics ranging from Glenn Miller’s Classic hits to Kool and the Gang.
6 p.m.Sunday, Aug. 7, Riverside Park (Rainsite is the Weber Center)
The Riverside Jazz Party features vocalist Janet Planet, hailed as a “Voice of the New Jazz Culture” by Jazziz magazine. Planet will present selections from her latest recording featuring “Bob Dylan goes Big Band.” Selections include Dylan’s “All I Really Want to Do,” “A Hard Rains A-gonna Fall,” “Tonight I’ll Be Staying Here With You” and many others including a rendition of “That’s Life.” The orchestra will also perform a world premiere of a special commissioned composition. The event kicks off with The Coulee Region All-Star Jazz Band directed by James Knutson.
5:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 18, Riverside Park
Special Guest Artist and “American Idol” star Reed Grimm joins the band for a first time collaboration with Moon Tunes. In addition to Grimm and the broad repertoire of classic and new big band jazz, the band will feature Sarah Vaughn and Della Reese in selections by Cathy Reitz.
All concerts are free, thanks to funding from a grant from the estate of Gertrude Salzer Gordon. The series dates back to 1974 when the Great River Festival of the Arts created an annual jazz on a Sunday afternoon performance.
The La Crosse Jazz Orchestra, directed by UW-La Crosse Professor Emeritus Greg Balfany, is Western Wisconsin’s only jazz repertory orchestra. The band specializes in the preservation and performance of music in the tradition of Basie, Mill, Ellington, Goodman and other name bands. See more about the orchestra at: www.lacrossejazzorchestra.com.