Sonic Evolution: Under the Influence Of Jazz

With Bill Frisell, Shaprece, Derek Bermel, and the Roosevelt High School Jazz Band

Co-Presented with Earshot Jazz Festival

What does the evocative work of African American painter Jacob Lawrence have to do with jazz, have to do with the Seattle Symphony, have to do with the Roosevelt High School Jazz Band? It’s all about influences.

Jacob Lawrence, a longtime professor at the University of Washington, created a body of work called The Migration Series depicting the Great Migration of African Americans out of the South. Derek Bermel, a noted composer and clarinetist, saw Lawrence’s work and wrote a piece that was hailed by The New York Times as “riveting” and “wondrous.” Now, add the performers, acclaimed Roosevelt High School Jazz Band and the Seattle Symphony, and you have the cornerstone work for this Sonic Evolution.

More influencing: the renowned jazz guitarist and Seattle transplant Bill Frisell takes on a new work by the prolific jazz pianist and composer Wayne Horvitz and Seattle-born vocalist Shaprece closes with new orchestral arrangements of her soulful blend of modern jazz, R&B and electronica.

Pre-concert performance with jazz brass quartet, The Westerlies, begins at 6:45pm in the Samuel & Althea Stroum Grand Lobby. Featuring a 30-minute set based on the repertoire from Wish the Children Would Come on Home: The Music of Wayne Horvitz. Free with Sonic Evolution ticket purchase.


Dates and Tickets

  • 29 Oct (Thu) 2015 7:30PM

Running time


Doors open

1 hour, 15 minutes prior to performance


S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium - Benaroya Hall


Ludovic Morlot


French conductor Ludovic Morlot is in his fifth season as Music Director of the Seattle Symphony. There have been many highlights during his first four seasons in this position, including an exhilarating performance at Carnegie Hall in May 2014, as reported in The New York Times: "The performance Mr. Morlot coaxed from his players was rich with shimmering colours and tremulous energy.”

Bill Frisell


Bill Frisell’s career as a guitarist and composer has spanned more than 35 years and many celebrated recordings.



Drawing from an eclectic palette of musical influences, Shaprece’s latest artistic direction ranges from electronic beats to orchestral arrangement, soulful vocals to ambient soundscapes.

Roosevelt High School Jazz Band

The Roosevelt Jazz Band is the most advanced of four performing jazz ensembles at Seattle’s Roosevelt High School.

Seattle Symphony

The Seattle Symphony is one of America’s leading symphony orchestras and is internationally acclaimed for its innovative programming and extensive recording history.





Derek Bermel

Migration Series, Concerto for Jazz Ensemble and Orchestra

Wayne Horvitz

Those Who Remain (World Premiere)


Bill Frisell’s performances are generously underwritten by Grant and Dorrit Saviers.