Jazz for the Holidays set for Dec. 12 at Walton Arts Center

Holiday on the Beach / Courtesy photo

Some of the area’s top jazz artists will perform at the Walton Arts Center this month during Jazz for the Holidays, presented in partnership with the Northwest Arkansas Jazz Society.

The concert is set for 7 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 12, and includes the Claudia Burson Quartet, Holiday on the Beach and Lighthouse Saxophone Quartet.

Tickets are on sale now and range from $15 to $25 plus applicable fees and can be purchased by calling 479-443-5600 or by visiting waltonartscenter.org.

The performance will take place in Baum Walker Hall to allow a minimum of four empty seats between parties and every other row will remain empty. The empty rows, with select seats removed, will also serve as walkways to seats located in the center of the theater, reducing contact between patrons.

Before and after the show, patrons can drop by Community Creative Center’s Holiday Gift Market in Walker Atrium. The annual maker’s market features one-of-a-kind gifts by local artists. The market is open from 5-9 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday through Dec. 23.

Patrons can also grab a festive drink for kids or adults at the Holidaze pop-up bar. Open seating is available nightly on a first-come, first-served basis. A limited number of reserved spaces are available Wednesday through Sunday with seating options inside or outside close to heaters or fire pits. Reservations are $15 for a two-hour period and can be made at www.waltonartscenter.org/holidaze.

From the Walton Arts Center:

Claudia Burson’s mastery of the piano is punctuated by her gutsy style and charisma. She is among the rare artists who have risen above technique to deliver music from a place deep within. Stylistically, the Fayetteville native is equally at home with jazz standards and ballads as she is with free improvisation.

She has anchored the house rhythm section for the North Arkansas Jazz Society’s Summer Jazz Concert Series; has been the featured artist at the Tulsa, Oklahoma, Women in Jazz Festival; has performed on the Walton Arts Center Jazz Series and is the featured pianist with the 17-piece jazz big band, the Fayetteville Jazz Collective. Joining Burson are long-time collaborators Ben Harris, Benji Wilson and Steve Wilkes.

Holiday on the Beach is a quintet of Northwest Arkansas musicians lead by trombonist, drummer and singer Matt Beach, a New Orleans native with a deep passion for its musical traditions. The group has been inspired by the music of New Orleans, infusing a selection of holiday and seasonal music with the spirit of the Big Easy. The quintet also includes Grant D’Aubin, Drew Rogers, Darren Novotny and Adam Becker.

Comprising four of Northwest Arkansas’ finest concert and jazz saxophonists, the Lighthouse Saxophone Quartet performs exciting new interpretations of popular songs and classical standards. For their holiday performance, the quartet will include selections from The Nutcracker and an assortment of holiday tunes, including “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” and “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.” Michael Hanna leads the group on soprano and alto saxophones along with Landon Cole, Austin Farnam and Samantha Canon.