Saxophonist Branford is the most adventurous of the Marsalis clan, ranging from his funk-obsessed Buckshot Lafonque incarnation to his well-known jazz work. Like bro Wynton, Branford also has explored classical music extensively, leading to this rather extraordinary collaboration with conductor Gil Jardin and members of the highly regarded Filarmonia Brasileira. Their joint program was conceived as a tribute to iconic Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos on the 50th anniversary of his death. Villa-Lobos is revered in part for combining Brazilian folkloric elements—especially choros—and reflections of its natural splendors with European classical music. With Marsalis as the featured soloist, the ensemble will perform several of Villa-Lobos's "Bachianas Brasileiras" (sort of choros in the style of Bach), plus material by French composer Darius Milhaud (also influenced by Brazilian folk music), Léa Freire (who juggles Brazilian genres with jazz and classical), and popular Brazilian artists Chico Buarque and Milton Nascimento.
Sat., Oct. 25, 8 p.m., 2008