Wednesday, March 30, 2022

6 Ways to Celebrate Jazz Appreciation Month with SOPAC


Top row from left: Marc Broussard, SFJAZZ Collective and Tab Benoit

Bottom row from left: Eddie Palmieri, Bria Skonberg and Jesse Cook

April is Jazz Appreciation Month! 

In celebration of one of America’s earliest and most iconic art forms, join the South Orange Performing Arts Center for 6 Jazz, Rhythm & Blues shows this April. Plus, keep the celebration going all year with even more Jazz, Rhythm & Blues shows at SOPAC. 

Marc Broussard

Marc Broussard’s signature “Bayou Soul” style and rich voice are influenced by his Louisiana roots and musical father, a guitarist for the Soul band The Boogie Kings.

Tab Benoit
with special guest Whiskey Bayou Revue
Opening Artist: Lightnin Malcolm

One of the most impressive guitarists to emerge from the rich Bayous of Louisiana, Tab Benoit’s guitar tone and his Otis Redding-like voice are iconic.

SFJAZZ Collective

The SFJAZZ Collective is an award-winning supergroup comprised of nine of the finest performers/composers at work in Jazz today. The current ensemble features Gretchen Parlato on vocals, Martin Luther McCoy on vocals, Chris Potter on saxophones, David Sánchez on saxophones, Etienne Charles on trumpet, Warren Wolf on vibraphone, Edward Simon on keyboards, Matt Brewer on bass and Kendrick Scott on drums.

Jazz in the Loft: Roseanna Vitro
With Special Guests Houston Person & Danny Bacher

Grammy-nominated artist Roseanna Vitro is a renowned vocalist specializing in Jazz. She has toured on every continent except Antarctica, representing the USA as a Jazz Ambassador for The US State Department, The Kennedy Center and Lincoln Center. For this performance, Roseanna Vitro will be joined by special guests Houston Person (tenor sax), Danny Bacher (vocalist/alto), Allen Farnham (piano), Dean Johnson (bass) and Alvester Garnett (drums).

Carolyn Dorfman Dance: Returning to Reconnect

Carolyn Dorfman Dance returns to SOPAC for a joyous evening that will have audiences dancing in their seats. The program includes PRIMA!, a new work in which Dorfman and her versatile company explore the robust, driving and buoyant sound of Jazz great Louis Prima and his band.

Blues in the Loft: Alex Tea

Alex Tea is a Roots/Reggae songwriter and multi-instrumentalist residing in Jersey City. His current projects include the band Kiwi, the international collaboration Orquestra Raiz, and the Jersey City Roots Orchestra.

Eddie Palmieri Latin Jazz Band
MAY 21

The iconic ten-time Grammy Award winner and NEA Jazz Master skillfully fuses the rhythm of his Puerto Rican heritage with the complexity of his influences: Thelonious Monk, Herbie Hancock and McCoy Tyner as well as his older brother, Charlie Palmieri.

Bria Skonberg Quartet

Described as "one of the most versatile and imposing musicians of her generation" (Wall Street Journal) and "the shining hope of hot Jazz" (New York Times), triple threat trailblazer Bria Skonberg is a force to be reckoned with. This multi-award winning trumpeter, singer and composer combines her signature sound of fiery trumpet playing and smoky vocals. She blends Jazz, Blues and beyond with storytelling and adventurous concoctions of classics and soulful originals.

Jesse Cook: Tempest Tour II

Jesse Cook is a global guitar virtuoso. The international appeal of this accomplished performer is his style of mixing Flamenco with Classical, Jazz, Zydeco, Blues and Brazilian samba.

Peabo Bryson
SEPTEMBER 10 (two shows!)

Dubbed the King of Balladeers, Peabo Bryson is a two-time Grammy-winning vocalist. This legendary voice of love offers a timeless mix of Pop, Soul and R&B as only he can. 

The James Hunter Six

British soulman James Hunter and his gritty, longstanding backing band bring you a sublime evening of no-nonsense Blues. Given their virtuosity, they have shared the stage with acts as diverse as Allen Toussaint, Sharon Jones and Van Morrison.

Billie & Blue Eyes presented by
John Pizzarelli & Catherine Russell
The Songs of Frank Sinatra & Billie Holiday

John Pizzarelli and Catherine Russell are a dynamic duo who will transport audiences to the glory days of Jazz with masterful ease, capturing Holiday’s effortless grace and Sinatra’s cool swagger.

Hot Sardines Holiday Stomp

With the Hot Sardines, experience a raucous, razzle dazzle celebration featuring classic Jazz and Swing holiday favorites and original tunes performed by the eight-piece band. Their brassy horn arrangements and rollicking piano melodies combined with the vocals from a chanteuse will transport listeners to a past era.


At this time, all SOPAC patrons are required to show proof of vaccination, or a negative Covid-19 test and wear a mask. All current Covid-19 Precautions & Policies can be found at

About SOPAC:

Since 2006, SOPAC has been serving as a premier performing arts center in the region. SOPAC offers innovative artistic and cultural experiences for diverse audiences in an intimate, inviting environment. The arts center hosts a variety of live performances, community events and education programs for all ages. SOPAC is home for Seton Hall University Arts Council’s performances, including the Classical Concert Series, Jazz ‘N the Hall performances and Seton Hall University Theatre productions. SOPAC programs are made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Arts and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. The South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. For more information, visit