Doors open: 20:00
UMS celebrates the opening of its 2013-2014 season and legendary jazz pianist, composer, and entertainer Fats Waller (1904-1943) with a down-home neighborhood party at Ann Arbor’s historic Downtown Home & Garden barn (originally built by the Hertler Bros. in 1906). Regional and local draft beers from adjoining Bill’s Beer Garden and fresh, ethnic dishes from the eight food carts of Mark’s Carts (in the courtyard) will complement pianist, bandleader, and MacArthur Fellow Jason Moran’s 21st-century interpretations of Fats Waller’s songbook featuring renowned bassist and vocalist Meshell Ndegeocello. A professional dancer from the Fats Waller Dance Party will be sure to get those interested on their feet dancing the Lindy Hop and Boogie-Woogie.
Moran and Ndegeocello break down Waller’s melodies and riffs, with the band “buil[ding] on those fragments, in rhythms coming out of 1960s-and-beyond dance music: Motown, house, hip-hop.” (The New York Times)