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Jazz legends Kenny Barron and Dave Holland perform at Smith Opera House April 6

Pianist Kenny Barron (right) and bassist Dave Holland (left) will perform together at the Smith Opera House April 6, 2019. Both are National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters. Photo by Syvlain Gripoix.

GENEVA NY — National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Masters Kenny Barron and Dave Holland come together for a special performance on Saturday, April 6 at 8 p.m. at the Smith Opera House. The concert is part of The Smith’s year-long celebration of the theater’s 125th birthday.

It also commemorates the Sixth Annual Scott LaFaro Day Celebration. The late double bass player grew up in Geneva.

Each frequently dubbed as this generation’s best jazz musicians on their respective instruments, Barron, on piano, and Holland, on bass, form a duet that can often be described as seamless, or like two people who know each other so well they finish each other’s sentences. Their 2014 album, “The Art of Conversation,” proved just that.

Kenny Barron has an unmatched ability to mesmerize audiences with his elegant playing, sensitive melodies and infectious rhythms. The Los Angeles Times named him “one of the top jazz pianists in the world” and Jazz Weekly calls him “The most lyrical piano player of our time.”

His long career has included collaborations with Dizzie Gillespie, Freddie Hubbard, Stanley Turrentine, Milt Jackson, Buddy Rich, Yusef Lateef, Stan Getz, Buster Williams, Ben Riley, Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis, Eddie Harris, Sonny Stitt and Harry “Sweets” Edison.

Barron consistently wins the jazz critics and readers polls, including Downbeat, Jazz Times and Jazziz magazines. The famed Spanish ceramist Lladro honored Mr. Barron with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012 and he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from his alma mater SUNY Empire State in 2013 and from Berklee College of Music in 2011. In 2009 he received the Living Legacy Award from Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation and was inducted into the American Jazz Hall of Fame and won a MAC Lifetime Achievement Award in 2005. He is a six-time recipient of Best Pianist by the Jazz Journalists Association.

Over the course of a nearly five-decade career, bassist/composer Dave Holland has never stopped evolving, reinventing his concept and approach with each new project while constantly honing his instantly identifiable voice. From the electric whirlwind of Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew-era band to the elegant flamenco of his collaboration with Spanish guitar legend Pepe Habichuela, Holland has been at the forefront of jazz in many of its forms since his earliest days.

In 2013, Holland unveiled his latest quartet, Prism, a visceral electric band featuring his longtime collaborator and Tonight Show bandleader Kevin Eubanks, along with keyboardist Craig Taborn and drummer Eric Harland. In addition, Holland continues to lead his Grammy-winning big band; his acclaimed quintet with saxophonist Chris Potter, trombonist Robin Eubanks, vibraphonist Steve Nelson, and drummer Nate Smith; and the Overtone quartet, with Potter, Harland, and pianist Jason Moran.

Holland is currently an artist in residence at the Royal Academy of Music and the University of Miami.

This concert is made possible with the generous support of Brenda and Dave Rickey.

Reserved seating tickets for Kenny Barron and Dave Holland are $27.50-$47.50 plus service fees and can be purchased at the Smith Box Office in person or by phone. They are also available online at

The Smith Center for the Arts, stewards of the historic Smith Opera House, provides diverse arts and educational enrichment opportunities year-round for Finger Lakes residents and visitors. The Smith Opera House is at 82 Seneca St. in Geneva, NY. Box Office hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. For more information, call 315-781-5483 during box office hours or visit