Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts
Ballet Folklórico de Antioquia, Colombia, 8 p.m., Friday, Feb. 3. Tickets: $29, $39.
Inspired by the vibrant culture of its native Colombia, this vivacious young dance company has won widespread praise around the world – including at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing – for its fiery, virtuoso performances of traditional Colombian folk music and dance. Presented with support from National Endowment for the Arts and Western States Arts Federation.
Celtic Nights: A Journey of Hope, 8 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 4. Tickets: $39, $49.
Celtic Nights expertly weaves together the dramatic story of the Irish journey to the New World. A dozen of Ireland’s finest vocalists, dancers and musicians perform traditional Celtic ballads and melodies, fiery fiddling and thundering step dancing. There will also be an Arts-Connect Step Dancing Master Class with Celtic Nights. The world-class dancers of Celtic Nights teach the fundamentals of Irish step dancing in a master class at 2 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 4. Admission is $15 and the class is limited to 30 participants.
Metropolitan Klezmer, 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 9. Tickets: $29, $39.
Hailed as “one of the finest American klezmer bands” by Songlines Magazine, Metropolitan Klezmer performs an exhilarating range of musical treasures with astonishing agility and refreshing depth. This collaborative adventure of eight exceptional New York musicians creates inspired neo-traditional interpretations of rollicking Yiddish dance, swing and tango, plus genre-expanding originals. There will be a pre-concert book signing by local author Leon H. Gildin, who will sign copies of his award-winning book, “The Polski Affair,” and its just-completed sequel, “The Family Affair,” in the Dayton Fowler Grafman Atrium at 6:30 p.m. The books tell the story of Holocaust survival, what the families knew or thought they knew and how, decades later, they learn, for the first time, those things that were better left unsaid.
The Duke Ellington Orchestra, 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 11. Tickets: $39, $49.
One of the most influential figures in jazz, composer and bandleader Duke Ellington created more than 2,000 pieces of music during his prolific career. Today, the Duke Ellington Orchestra carries on his remarkable legacy, introducing new generations of music lovers to that one-of-a-kind big band sound. There will be an Arts-Connect Open Dance with the AZ Lindy Hop Society starting at 3:30 p.m. Learn to swing and strut your stuff at this open dance with the AZ Lindy Hop Society in the Dayton Fowler Grafman Atrium. Free to the public. No-host bar. The event is presented by the Fred J. English and Sara M. English Charitable Trust, with additional support from Vi at Silverstone, a Vi and Plaza Companies Community. Promotional support provided by The Arizona Lindy Hop Society.
TAO: The Way of the Drum, 8 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 18. Tickets: $49, $59.
Living and training in the rugged mountains of Japan, the athletic, young drummers of TAO bring extraordinary precision, energy and stamina to their explosive performances. Now an international sensation, TAO offers a modern take on the ancient art of taiko.
Simone Dinnerstein, 7:30 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 19. Tickets: $26.
American pianist Simone Dinnerstein has gained an international following thanks to the remarkable success of her top-selling recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations. Making her Scottsdale debut, she will perform Bach’s three chorale preludes for piano by Busoni, Kempff and Myra Hess; Partita No. 1 in B-flat Major and Partita No. 2 in C Minor; and Schubert’s Four Impromptus, Op. 90. The performance also includes the Center’s Keyboard in the Sky video display, which enables the audience to see the pianist’s hands moving across the keyboard in real time from any seat in the house. Presented by the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust.
Irvin Mayfield & the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, 8 p.m., Friday, Feb. 24. Tickets: $39, $49.
One of the young giants in the jazz world, trumpeter and bandleader Irvin Mayfield founded the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, affectionately known as NOJO, in 2002 to carry the tradition of New Orleans jazz into the 21st century. Since then, this swinging, 16-piece band has shared The Big Easy’s rich jazz heritage with enthusiastic audiences around the country and won the 2010 Grammy Award for “Best Large Jazz Ensemble.” There will be an Arts-Connect Post-Show Talk with Irvin Mayfield and KJZZ’s Blaise Lantana. Lantana chats onstage with bandleader Irvin Mayfield of the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra following the concert. Free to ticket holders.