GUNNISON—The Casino Star Theatre kicks off its 2021-2022 live concert season with a free Gypsy Jazz and swing dance show on Tuesday, Sept. 14 at 7 p.m. in the Main Street theatre.
The concert will feature a Utah based Gypsy Jazz group called The Red Rock Hot Club and International Swing Dance Competition Winners Anthony Chen and Irina Amzashvili.
Preceding the concert, a free community swing dance lesson will take place at Building 178 on Main Street from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. All community members are encouraged to come and grow their social dancing skills.
The Casino Star Theatre Foundation, partnering with a parallel Utah non-profit organization, Excellence in the Community, is proud to bring this lively music and dance show to Gunnison for the first time, said Melissa Ghandour, program director.
The Red Rock Hot Club has been supplying the Intermountain West with Django Reinhardt style Jazz since 1999. Led by the hard-swinging guitar of Pat Terry, the group specializes in “Gypsy Jazz,” a European take of the American Art form. Guitar legend, Django, and violinist Stephane Grappelli, formed the original Hot Club of France in 1937, and subsequently created an entirely new Jazz genre by incorporating swing rhythms and mimicking the sounds of Louis Armstrong’s horn on their instruments.
Anthony Chen and Irina Amzashvili have been dancing together since 2015, but started swing dancing when they were in their teens. Specializing in Lindy Hop, Charleston, Balboa and other genres of swing, they both hold champion titles at numerous events in the nation and abroad, including the International Lindy Hop Championships. When not at home in Salt Lake City, they are often sought after for teaching swing dance workshops around the world. Anthony also founded the non-profit Salt City Swing, which focuses on dance instruction, community outreach and education.
The Casino Star Theatre has provided both cinematic and live entertainment to Gunnison and its surrounding cities since 1913 and continues that tradition today as a non-profit organization dedicated to both the restoration of the historic building and its mission of bringing high quality arts and entertainment options to the citizens of the valley.
“Patrons are encouraged to join us for the first live performance show of the season and take note of the newly installed doors and ticket booth that were completed in the last couple of weeks,” Ghandour said.
The Casino Star Live Performance season continues with Cowboys in Concert featuring Brenn Hill and Andy Nelson on Oct. 1 and back by popular demand, A Kurt Bestor Christmas on Dec. 20.