The fourth annual free “Jazz on the Lawn” series outside Santa Monica City Hall, 1685 Main St., will premiere Sunday, August 9th with Upright Cabaret.
Concerts are scheduled on four Sundays this month from 5 to 7 p.m., featuring jazz and world music performances. The series is presented by the City of Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Division.
Upright Cabaret will bring some of the top vocalists of Hollywood and Broadway together for a live performance August 9th. The Cabaret plays host to Tony Award-nominee Valarie Pettiford, who has had a distinguished career as a “Fosse Dancer,” working with Fosse in
Dancin’ and Big Deal.
She was last seen on Broadway in Fosse, for which she was nominated for a Tony Award. Her other Broadway and national tour credits include Sophisticated Ladies and the 30th anniversary tour of West Side Story.
She made her West End debut in Chicago as Velma Kelly, opposite Chita Rivera, and in 2005, she was “Queenie“ in Michael John La Chuisa and George C. Wolfe’s The Wild Party, for which she received a Garland Award.
On television, she has had recurring roles on House of Payne, The District, and Honey I Shrunk the Kids, and she has appeared on Criminal Minds, CSI Miami, Bones, Frasier, The West Wing, and The X-Files. Pettiford has also appeared in such films as Stomp the Yard, The Wiz, and The Cotton Club. Currently, she is performing in Guys and Dolls at the Hollywood Bowl.
Upright Cabaret boasts one of the most extensive and diverse rosters of talent in the country, including Broadway divas, talented troubadours, cabaret performers and Hollywood notables, a Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Division spokesman said.
The group features stars from shows such as Wicked, Xanadu, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Hair.
Other concerts scheduled are Grupo Falso Baiano (August 16th), Double G (August 23rd) and John West (August 30th).
Jazz on the Lawn attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets to enjoy the show. Parking is conveniently located at the Santa Monica Civic Center (free after 4 p.m.).
Soft drinks and water are available for purchase, with proceeds benefiting the Virginia Avenue Park Teen Center, a youth arts and recreation center providing educational and
cultural arts programs designed by teens for teens.
For additional information on the Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Division and the Jazz on the Lawn series, www.arts.santa-monica.org/.