Meetings & Conventions: Short Cuts June 1998
Short Cuts:ALL THAT JAZZ
If a quick survey finds your attendees have
pegged legends like John Coltrane, Charles Mingus, Louis Armstrong
and Duke Ellington as baseball heroes, take them to a good jazz
club, and soon they'll be clamoring for saxophone lessons.
One of the newest jazz venues to hit the scene is the
Kansas City Jazz Museum (816-474-8463), which
debuted in September 1997. Memorabilia highlights include Ella
Fitzgerald's rhinestone eyeglasses, Charlie Parker's saxophone and
Louis Armstrong's lip salve. Several interactive exhibits tell the
history of the city's rich jazz culture through musical recordings
and videos; mixing stations allow wannabes to create their own
unique sound mix; and local jazz musicians take to the stage at the
Blue Room, a breeding ground for rising stars. Designed to
replicate a classic 1920s Kansas City jazz club, the Blue Room
offers dinner and live music four nights a week for groups of up to
150. Several other areas throughout the facility are suitable for
parties of 50 to 1,500, from a soul food reception in the
glass-enclosed Atrium to an open-air dinner in the courtyard.
New Orleans is the town that gave us jazz legends Jellie Roll
Morton and Louis Armstrong. Book ahead for a night at
Tipitina's (504-529-1980), a hot spot since 1942
for down-home New Orleans jazz, made even more famous by its
appearance in the film The Big Easy. The club's scheduled
acts include Harry Connick Sr. (yes, he's the father of heartthrob
Harry Connick Jr.) and the Neville Brothers. Events are arranged
for groups of 100 to 5,000. At Snug Harbor
(504-949-0696), a local hangout, groups of up to 25 can take in
plenty of good music along with popular local specialties like
Cajun gumbo and barbecued shrimp. Show times are 9:00 p.m. and
One of New York City's long-established jazz enclaves is
Birdland (212-581-3080). Named for saxophone great
Charlie "Bird" Parker, the club, which recently moved to newer,
bigger digs in midtown, will arrange corporate events for up to
200. Newer to the Manhattan jazz scene but fast making a mark is
the elegant Iridium (212-582-2121) on 63rd Street
across from Lincoln Center. The bill regularly features such
renowned headliners as Pharoh Sanders and the Ron Carter Quintet.
Iridium caters to groups of up to 500.
At Green Dolphin Street (773-395-0066), a
swanky, upscale club in Chicago, the music comes packaged in a
1940s ballroom scene. Named after the jazz standard made famous by
the late, great Miles Davis, the club's musical roster includes
local talent and big name draws like Winston Marsalis. The Jazz
Room holds 125. Several dining rooms host banquets for up to 250
and receptions for 700.
What did you learn in school that has helped you
the most in life?
"No matter how you worry, it all seems to work out. It's
just like meeting planning. You drive yourself nuts, but in the end
it all comes together."
Director, Travel & Special Events
"How to be organized, how to persevere and how to meet
deadlines. Sending a proposal to a client is a lot like handing in
a term paper to a professor. The big difference is that in real
life everything is pass/fail."
Los Angeles, Calif.
"How to work as part of a team. When I was in college, I
was going to be a classical violinist. In an orchestra, you have to
be a team player, and it really shows if you make a mistake. I
guess the same thing applies to meeting planning."
Audrey Zook, CMP
Meetings & Marketing Manager
National Cattleman's Beef Association
Back to Current Issue index
| Back to Short Cuts indexM&C
| Events Calendar
| Incentive News
| Meetings Market
| CVB Links
| Reader Survey
| Hot Dates
| Contact M&C