If you happen to be in London on 23 November, you can catch Essentially Ellington, a programme of events celebrating Duke Ellington which runs from 4:30 in the afternoon to after 10:00 pm, all as part of the EFG London Jazz Festival, 2013. The website says:
An extended programme that explores the legacy of a towering figure in jazz history, paying tribute to a composer and bandleader who exerted a massive influence over the evolution of 20th century music. Evocative, richly-textured, and orchestral in scope, the Duke’s sound ranges from heart-stopping melody to rocking blues.
4.30pm - afternoon panel session investigates the enduring resonance of a key member of the jazz aristocracy. Free to all.
6pm - Ellington the pianist is celebrated in a solo set from one of this country’s finest exponents of ragtime and stride, Martin Litton. Free to all.
7.30pm - In the Spirit of Duke, where Tommy Smith’s Scottish National Jazz Orchestra explores repertoire from the 20s to the 50s with its own inimitable exuberance – ‘an exhilarating re-enactment of Ellington’s gigs, right down to the stage set-up’ (Guardian). Mark Lockheart’s Ellington in Anticipation is both complementary and contrasting – and shows just how deeply the Duke’s sonic world continues to inspire successive generations. A series of Ellington’s most characterful themes are deconstructed and re-arranged for an ensemble of London’s finest – Seb Rochford, Finn Peters amongst them. 'wit, ingenuity and boldness…a delightful solution to the old/new wrangle' (Mojo).
10.30pm, post-concert Orphy Robinson and Cleveland Watkiss preside over the wheels of steel to remix the early Ellington big band sound for the 21st century. Free to all.
Full details, including ticket prices for the concerts, may be found here.