Carnival of Jazz

Emily Jo Cureton,
Daily News,
June 7, 2008

For the past six years, Igor Butman and Larisa Dolina have collaborated to produce "Carnival of Jazz", a spectacular event no true jazz lover would want to miss. "Carnival of Jazz 2" comes to Manhattan on June 15 and 17, as part of the 6th Annual Russian Heritage Festival, giving New Yorkers a unique chance to see Russia's brightest and most enduring jazz stars perform. 

Tenor saxophonist Igor Butman and vocalist Larisa Dolina both possess a breadth of artistic maturity and range. They successfully take on songs made popular by American icons like Gloria Gaynor, Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holliday. An icon in her own right, Larisa Dolina has made 14 solo albums, sold over ten million records worldwide, and toured the globe many times over. With an awe inspiring versatility, she has mastered a multitude of genres and continues to deliver innovative performances year after year. Heroines from more than 80 cartoons and films sing with her voice, while her sultry rendition of "Georgia On My Mind" elicited the praise of Ray Charles himself. In 1998, Dolina was named a People's Artist of Russia, the highest honor a performer can receive in Russia. 

Widely regarded as one of the best tenor saxophonists in the world, Igor Butman's talent and finesse has also garnered the respect of his peers and the adoration of countless fans. Already an established artist in the Soviet Union when he came to the U.S. at the age of 26, Butman began touring with some of the biggest names in jazz: Dave Brubeck, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny and Grover Washington, just to list a few. In 1999, he formed the Igor Butman Big Band, incorporating?Russia's finest musicians in to a veritable powerhouse of jazz talent. 

Butman and Dolina have not only impressed fellow musicians and?millions of listeners over the course of nearly three decades, but also some of the most powerful men in the world. Bill Clinton wrote in his memoirs that he "never heard a finer performance" than that which Igor Butman delivered at a private concert at the Kremlin in 2000. Meanwhile, Boris Yeltsin declared Larisa Dolina Woman of the Year in 1998 and Vladimir Putin presented her with the prestigious Award of Honor in 2005. 

Capable of entertaining audiences of every age and nationality with their timeless melodies and sheer musical prowess, Larisa Dolina with Butman's Big Band can be counted on the deliver unforgettable performances time and again.