Melbourne, Australia-born and Paris-based vocalist/pianist Sarah McKenzie returns to California following her U.S. debut at Monterey Jazz Festival for the “World Premiere” of her 13-song live concert of newly composed material commissioned by Jazz at Lesher Center, San Francisco – Paris of the West. McKenzie brings to life the wondrous story of the Verdier family starting with Felix´ and Emile´s voyage during the Gold Rush in 1850 aboard the “Ville de Paris” ship trekking from France to San Francisco and their quest to open a store, the ‘City of Paris’, celebrating French culture in downtown San Francisco, all the way to the post-prohibition 1930ies when Paul Verdier and his friend and store manager Charles Gassion turned the “City of Paris” into the center of French culture in the Bay area.
An adept composer in her own right, McKenzie debuts 13 commissioned songs written in the tradition of the Great American Songbook for the premiere of San Francisco – Paris of the West: a collective of gorgeous narratives set to 1930s-inspired music, McKenzie performs alongside an acclaimed live band featuring John Clayton (bass), Jeff Hamilton (drums), Warren Wolf (vibes), Graham Dechter (guitar), Jeff Clayton (sax), Rickey Woodard (sax), and Gilbert Castellanos (trumpet).
Running Time: approx. 90 minutes, with no intermission