2021 Izzy Asper Jazz Performances

2021 Izzy Asper Jazz Performances

The Izzy Asper Jazz Performances, Winnipeg’s premier jazz series, is thrilled to announce a free, four-concert jazz series to be delivered virtually between February and May 2021. With the forced suspension of the regular 2020-21 season, we are proud now to bring a line-up of local, Canadian, and international artists into the homes of our loyal subscribers and other jazz-loving members of our community, and bringing the Izzy Asper Jazz Performances magic into the homes of jazz lovers everywhere.

The generosity of The Asper Foundation, the series’ major sponsor, is allowing us to offer all concerts without charge, available on opening night to registrants only, then accessible through Rady JCC.


How to Register

To register for these exciting concerts, click here.

Please note Rady JCC Members will be required to log in. Non-Members may register as well. They will need to register as a ‘Guest’ and complete the necessary required information (please note when prompted to input a zip code, use a postal code with a space in the middle). All registrants will receive an email with a secure link the morning of the concert premiere to access that night’s event.


This Year’s Lineup

Trio Bembe (Latin jazz) – Local
February 20, 2021
8:00 p.m.

Our season opens February 20 with Trio Bembe, an award-winning Winnipeg trio specializing in the Latin jazz. With Amber Epp on piano and lead vocals, Victor Hugo Lopez Bustamante on guitar and Cuban tres, and percussionist Rodrigo Muñoz grounding the group with infectious rhythms, the group brings to the stage a deep commitment to traditional melodies and instrumentation balanced by witty and sensitive Latin settings of more mainstream tunes. Trio Bembe is the perfect way to warm up the chilly month of February.

Laila Biali (vocalist/pianist) – Toronto
March 20, 2021
8:00 p.m.

We are thrilled to showcase Laila Biali, one of Canada’s pre-eminent singer-pianists. With an international touring career, one Juno award and one nomination, and a handful of songwriting awards, Biali is a performer whose extraordinary facility on both piano and vocals is perfectly matched by her warm and charismatic presence. About her 2020 recording Out of Dust, All About Jazz says “There’s no boxing Laila Biali in… Capable of making you laugh and cry all at once, her delivery on Out of Dust is divine. 4.5 stars.” We’ll be treated to an unusually intimate concert from her own home in Toronto.

Karly Epp & Karl Kohut (voice/bass duo) – Local
April 17, 2021
8:00 p.m.

Our third concert features Winnipeg voice-bass duo Karly Epp and Karl Kohut sharing a program of love songs. The transparency and elegance of a single voice and an accompanying bassline brings particular focus to the lyrics of songs which explore the many faces and facets of love. The fact that the duo is also married only deepens that expressiveness.

Bruce Barth (jazz pianist) – New York
May 15, 2021
8:00 p.m.

Jazz pianist BRUCE BARTH has played with a veritable who’s-who of jazz icons, including Art Farmer, Freddie Hubbard, Phil Woods, Tony Bennett, Rene Marie, Terell Stafford, and Steve Wilson. He has appeared on over 125 recordings and movie sound tracks, including 15 recordings of his own. His taste, technique, and musicality will be on full display in a mix of standards and originals in this intimate solo piano set from his New York apartment.