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Santa Monica's 'Jazz on the Lawn' Concert Series Returns Next Month


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By Lookout Staff

July 24, 2018 -- Santa Monica's popular Jazz on the Lawn concert series kicks off its 13th season in Santa Monica next month with a performance by vibraphonist, marimbist and composer Nick Mancini and his group.

Mancini will take the stage with his "Collective" August 5 at 5 p.m. in Gandara Park, 1819 Stewart Street. Pre-concert games begin at 4 p.m. and continue until 7 p.m.

Once again, this year's series features a "sampling of jazz and world music genres, free dance lessons and intermission performances (on select dates and some of the area’s finest food trucks," organizers said.

The season's first show will be hosted by actor, spoken word artist, humanitarian and TED speaker Sean Hill.

Mancini's instrumental group features vocalist Laura Mace and showcases original material "notable for expansive and lyrical melodies, lush, otherworldly harmonies and groovy melodic bass lines," organizers said.

Food will be offered for sale by the Berlin Truck (grilled cheese sandwiches and German style sausages), the Yalla Truck (falafel and chicken kabob sandwiches) and the Paradise Cookies & Ice Cream (fresh baked cookies and homemade ice cream).

The series continues Sunday, August 12, with Scambooty, "an upbeat, 5-piece vocal band, which weaves jazz, swing, folk, blues, jump, country and the Great American Songbook into tight, three-part vocals," organizers said.

A free swing dance lesson will be led by Marshall Watson, professional swing dancer and DJ, and his dance partner Chelsea Beach at 4:30 p.m.

The show will be hosted by Joe Hernandez Kolski, co-founder of Downbeat 720, an open-mic event for high school performers sponsored by the City.

Twanguero, a pioneer in the Latin twang genre, will take the stage Sunday, August 19, to perform in "an incomparably engaging style that connects Spanish guitar, American folk, blues, rockabilly, flamenco and tango," organizers said.

The Samohi Jazz Combo will perform contemporary jazz standards during an intermission concert at 5:50 p.m. Hill will host the evening's festivities.

The series concludes Sunday, August 26, when Orquesta Tabaco y Ron -- a 10-piece big band -- performs "a high-energy, hard-edged brand of salsa music with a tropical sound."

A free salsa dance lesson will be offered before the concert, at 4:30 p.m., led by Rudy Zalez, a professional salsa dancer known for his charisma and distinctive style. Hernandez Kolski will serve as host.

Jazz on the Lawn is presented by the City of Santa Monica Cultural Affairs Division. In-kind support is provided by the City of Santa Monica Water Resources Division.

For more information on the series, visit


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