LEWISTON – Led by a musician whom The New Yorker called “one of the most gifted bassists of his generation,” the Avishai Cohen Trio will open Bates College’s 2008 performance season Wednesday, Sept. 3.

The 8 p.m. concert will be held in Olin Arts Center Concert Hall, 75 Russell St.

It will kick off a season of performances that include dance, theater and musical offerings ranging from jazz to classical to the Top 40 mashups of Girl Talk.

Here are September’s performance highlights: (Tickets are $10 general admission/$4 for students and seniors, with the exception of the free performance by dancer-choreographer-singer Janis Brenner.)

Together, bassist and composer Avishai Cohen, drummer Mark Guiliana and pianist Shai Maestro produce an eclectic jazz that effortlessly blends energy and lyricism. Once a member of Chick Corea’s New Trio, Cohen is regarded not only as an influential bassist and composer but also as a visionary bandleader on a par with Charles Mingus, Jaco Pastorius, Charlie Haden, Stanley Clarke and even Sting. He has performed with jazz master Paquito D’Rivera, major symphony orchestras and pop-soul artist Alicia Keyes. For more information, visit www.avishaimusic.com.

One of the most influential and dynamic musicians of our time, Panamanian pianist and composer Danilo Pérez will bring his trio to Olin Arts Center Concert Hall at 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 11. In just more than a decade, Perez’s distinctive blend of Pan-American jazz has attracted critical acclaim and loyal audiences. Learn more at www.daniloperez.com.

Also open to the public is a master class that Pérez will offer at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 10, in the Olin concert hall. There is no charge. For more information, e-mail [email protected]

The tango troupe Pablo Aslan’s Avantango will perform in Olin at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 26. An ensemble featuring some of the world’s leading tango musicians and dancers, Avantango performs the tango as an ever-evolving art form incorporating jazz improvisation while turning historic cliches upside down. Learn more at www.avantango.com.

Dancer-choreographer-singer Janis Brenner will offer a solo performance in Olin at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 17. Brenner explores the passion, humor, depth and emotional power of our relationships to others, to ourselves and to the world around us. The New York Times described Brenner’s dances as filled with “free-wheeling motion and rooted emotional intensity.” Her Bates performance includes a vocal suite by Meredith Monk and “Solo For Janis” by Richard Siegal. Learn more at www.janisbrenner.com.

At 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27, in Chase Hall Commons, 56 Campus Ave., Bates will present Girl Talk, the stage name of Gregg Gillis, who specializes in sample-based remixes in which he uses elements from myriad songs to create a new work. Mixing everything from hip hop to soft rock to R&B singles, Gillis’ work stimulates both dance-crazed teenage masses and mashup geeks. His four albums, all on the Illegal Art label, include this year’s “Feed the Animals.”

The Chase Hall Committee at Bates will present this concert. Tickets, at a price to be announced.

Concert tickets are available at www.batestickets.com, by calling 786-6135 or by e-mailing [email protected] For more information, visit www.bates.edu/music-concerts.

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