For anyone familiar with the history of American popular music, the era from 1930-1950 is regarded as an especially fertile and important period. Songwriters such as Cole Porter, George Gershwin, Jerome Kern and Moss Hart — to name just a few — were bringing a new lyric and melodic sophistication to their songs. Many of their songs went on to become “standards,” or works so important that popular and jazz musicians consider them essential. Jazz musicians, in particular, embraced the music because of the possibilities for improvisation they suggested.
Over time, these beloved songs became known collectively as “The Great American Songbook” and Voci and the Gorge Jazz Collective are joining forces to explore some of the most iconic of them in two concerts. The performances — on May 19 at 7 p.m. and May 21 at 2 p.m. — will be the season’s final performances for both ensembles.
The concerts will be at the Wy’east Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $10 adults (18 and over) and $5 for students and children (10-17) and are available at the door and online through gorgeorchestra.org.