June 15, 2015 -- This week’s summer fare performances will feature grooving jazz rhythms as the Marine Latin Jazz Ensemble performs at 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 17 on the west terrace of the U.S. Capitol and at 7 p.m., Thursday, June 18 at Pentagon Row in Arlington, Va. The Thursday concert marks the first performance at the Pentagon Row location by members of “The President’s Own,” and patrons should also note the earlier than normal start time of 7 p.m.
Led by pianist Gunnery Sgt. AnnaMaria Mottola, the ensemble will perform an eclectic collection of Latin jazz styles including selections from the following: Tito Puente’s “Oye Como Va;” Chick Corea’s “Spain” and “La Fiesta;” David Samuels’ “Rendezvous;” Michel Camilo’s “Caribe” and “Suntan;” Oscar Hernandez’s “Adelante Siempre Voy;” John Birks “Dizzy” Gillespie and Chano Pozo’s “Soul Sauce;” Consuelo Velázquez’s “Besame Mucho;” Airto Moreira’s “Tombo in 7/4;” Paul Simon’s “Late in the Evening;” Paquito D’Rivera’s Paquito’s Samba; Wayne Wallace’s “La Familia;” and Heraclio Fernández’s “El Diablo Suelto.”
What started out as an ensemble for the Marine Band’s Music in the High Schools educational outreach initiative developed into a place for the more classically-trained musicians to hone their skills in a genre that is almost like a second language. “This music has a strong foundation with percussion, and we have the best players possible for this style,” Mottola said. “The percussive aspect is my favorite part. It is intense, while being respectful of the traditional rhythms from all of the diverse Latin countries we are pulling music from.”
“When I am picking music for these concerts, I am careful to choose a variety of Latin styles, while also giving every instrument in the ensemble a chance to shine,” she continued. “That way there really is a little something from all the different instrumental colors.”
Marine Band musicians perform jazz frequently at the White House for President Barack Obama and his guests and the two concerts this week will give patrons the rare opportunity to listen to many of the same songs that might be performed at the Executive Mansion, from traditional Latin music, to jazz fusion, salsa dance music, and even pop and rock styles.
For the performances, limited street parking is available. For concerts at the Capitol, patrons may take the red line to Union Station or the blue, orange, or silver lines to the Capitol South station. For the concert at Pentagon Row take the blue or yellow line to the Pentagon City station. The concerts are free but weather permitting and programming is subject to change. Inclement weather announcements will be made by 6 p.m. on the band’s Concert Information Line at (202) 433-4011.
Directions and parking: U.S. Capitol
Directions and parking: Pentagon Row