February 15, 2014 at 1:00 am

Civil rights sets the tone for 'Jazz Speaks for Life'

Jason Moran and the Bandwagon perform Sunday at 'Jazz Speaks for Life.' (Clay Patrick McBride)

The Detroit Jazz Festival is presenting “Jazz Speaks for Life,” featuring Dave and Iola Brubeck’s great civil rights composition “The Gates of Justice” on Sunday at the Fillmore.

The Brubecks wrote the work after the Rev. Martin Luther King’s assassination in 1968, weaving King’s words and Biblical texts with music. It was performed last summer at the Detroit Jazz Festival.

The Brubeck cantata will be performed by Jason Moran and the Bandwagon, with vocals by Alberto Mizrahi as well as Detroit baritone Emery Stephens, and a 60-voice choir made up of members of the Wayne State Symphonic Choir and the Detroit Choral Society.

The concert will feature other works dealing with civil rights and an opening narrative tracing jazz’s role in the movement.

Tickets are $10, available at livenation.com. Doors open at the Fillmore at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, with the concert starting at 3:30 p.m.


Alberto Mizrahi will perform in 'The Gates of Justice.' (Anshe Emet Synagogue)