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Jazz singer Jane Monheit brings award-winning pipes to Newman Center

Jazz singer Jane Monheit visits the Newman Center on Oct. 18.

If you want a sneak peek at jazz singer Jane Monheit’s Oct. 18 concert at the Newman Center for the Performing Arts, get your hands on a copy of her newest album, 2010’s Home.

Recorded with the same trio that will accompany her at the Newman Center — pianist Michael Kanan, bass player Neal Miner and drummer (and Monheit’s husband) Rick Montalbano — the disc is a return to Monheit’s roots as a live jazz singer.

“On my last few albums, I touched on a lot of different genres. But the deal with this record was sort of getting back to making a record that was close to what happens in the live show,” says Monheit, who chose classic songs such as “There’s A Small Hotel” and “Everything I’ve Got Belongs to You” for the album.

“I’ve made all these records that are very fancy, with strings and big arrangements and the whole thing, and they’re gorgeous, but you can’t get on stage with a piano trio and replicate that,” she says. “So we made a record that’s what we do live.”

That said, don’t think that listening to a CD is any substitute for seeing Monheit in concert.

“The live show’s the most important thing in jazz — much more important than the albums we put out, I think,” she says. “The albums are sort of like beautiful portraits of where we are at the time. The live show is the core of what we do.”

A musical-theater fan who was raised New York and graduated from the Manhattan School of Music, Monheit first made a name for herself in 1998, when she took second place in the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition. She was 20 years old. In the 13 years since, she’s released eight albums, collaborated with musicians such as Michael Buble and Terence Blanchard, and performed for jazz lovers all over the world.

“We get to see every tiny corner of the planet,” she says. “Most of my Twitter following is in Brazil and Indonesia. So [jazz is] bigger than people think. And the nice thing about it is that when people are with you, you don’t lose them. There isn’t this flavor-of-the-month thing like there is in pop. Once you become accepted as an artist, you’re there. You’re established. You can work and live, and it’s beautiful.”

Jane Monheit performs at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 18 in DU’s Newman Center, 2344 E. Iliff Ave. A free “Behind the Curtain” lecture begins at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $33–$49; visit for more information.





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