The Throckmorton Theatre Presents
New Worlds of Jazz Series

Inaugural Season, “Jazz Destinations,” Features World-Class Jazz

Spiced with Exotic Flavors from Around the Globe


9/23/22: EMPYREA




The inaugural season of our New Worlds of Jazz series, Jazz Destinations, offers a listening experience unlike anything else ever presented before in Marin County. Each concert will demonstrate how Jazz has emerged out of a melting pot of disparate cultures that blend together like many of the world’s finest cross-cultural cuisines. From Bebop to Afro-Cuban- or Japanese-infused Jazz, you will be exposed to music that transcends conventional boundaries but never loses its “swing.” Plus, this series will give you the rare opportunity to experience aural magic just feet away from some of the Bay Area’s preeminent, innovative musicians. Jazz Destinations is curated by Ian Dogole, Marin County recording artist/percussionist/educator and Mario Guarneri, trumpeter and founder of the Fairfax-based nonprofit organization Jazz in the Neighborhood. All shows will be presented in the Tivoli Room, in the front of the theatre. Beverages and snacks will be available in the theatre lobby before the show. 


General: $25

Student/Senior: $20

Jazz Series Pass (4 concerts for price of 3): $75



Empyrea is a trio of internationally acclaimed musical explorers who revel in the limitless possibilities that reside in the great unknown. The group is percussionist Ian Dogole, saxophonist/vocalist Richard Howell and bassist/cellist/other Kash Killion.


Their musical explorations defy category – cross-cultural, cross-genre and able to leap into the cosmic spaceways at any moment – all with an intention to uplift and energize their audiences.


While Jazz plays an integral role in Empyrea’s creations, instruments and inspirations from Africa, Asia, the Middle East and the Americas percolate throughout the proceedings.


Stellar exploratory small ensembles such as Codona and the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble have exposed us to the magic of creative improvised music that lives beyond all limits. Now, Empyrea is ready to take the torch and light a new path.

For more information on Ian click here.

For more information on Richard click here.

For more information on Kash click here.


Ian Dogole – udu, djembe, doumbek, talking drum, kalimba, hang, maracas llaneras

Richard Howell – tenor/soprano saxophones, vocals

Kash Killion – double bass, cello, bolon, sarangi


Christelle Durandy fuses Afro-Caribbean, jazz and other polyrhythmic sounds in a provocative exploration of the African diaspora’s diffuse and powerful musical energy – a multicultural complexity Christelle herself embodies, having been raised in France by a mother from Reunion Island and a father from Guadeloupe.


Christelle fronts her Afro-Caribbean ensemble Sanktet (a play on the French phrase “cinq têtes” or “five heads”) as well as the Grammy-winning Pacific Mambo Orchestra. She contributes her talents as writer, arranger and performer to the all-female World-Latin music collective Cocomama. Her vocals have been featured on diverse projects with such luminaries as John Santos, Paula West, George Mesterhaze, Jon Faddis, Pedrito Martinez, Baptiste Trotignon, Toshi Reagon, Allison Miller, Luis Enrique, Paul Carlon Octet, LaFrae Sci, Camille Thurman, Edward Perez, Ran Blake, John Benitez, Max Pollak RumbaTap, Ricky Ford and Ze Big Band, La India, Camille A. Brown, Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Meklit Hadero, Carlos “El Bola” Betancourt, and Millicent Jhonnie.


 For more biographical information on Christelle, click here.

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Christelle Durandy - Voice

Nathan Bickart - Piano

Steve Hogan - Bass

Javier Navarrette - Percussion

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The genesis of this group, Otonowa (Sound Circle), comes from the title a recording of the same name translated into English that was released a number of years ago in Japan on King Records and in the US on Evidence Music. The group was then called the “Asian American Jazz Trio.” The concept behind this group is very much in the tradition of Jazz, truly an American art form. This group is comprised of Japanese (now US citizens) who live in the US and also Japanese Americans who were born in the US. Thus, this group is made up of Japanese and Japanese-American musicians raised in this country, learning the jazz vocabulary in the US and retooling and reinventing songs from their native land in the jazz idiom.


Akira Tana celebrates the release of his fourth recording with Otonowa entitled “Wind and Light.” Their first recording was released in 2013 when the group was formed to play for communities in Tohoku (Northern Japan) that were devastated by the 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami that claimed over 20,000 lives. Following seven annual tours to the region, Otonowa is looking forward to another tour in 2023 and is likewise looking forward to performing for the audience at the Throckmorton Theatre on December 2nd!


For biographical information on Akira, please click here.

Masaru Kogasaxophones, flutes, percussion

Ken Okadabass

Akira Tanadrums

Photo by Tetsuro Goto

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Anne SajderaPiano

Eytan Schillinger-HymanBass

Deszon ClaiborneDrums

TBA Saxophone


Gypsy culture has long been known for exceptional music and musicians. World music audiences are well-acquainted with the musical prowess of flamenco artists in Spain, “gypsy jazz” in France and Balkan gypsy virtuosity. However, a lesser-known but no less exceptional culture of gypsy musical art has been flourishing all along in Central Europe, one that actively embraces jazz and with tremendous creativity pulls traditional gypsy and other regional folk songs into our present musical moment, creating new works along the way.


For this final concert of the series, pianist/composer Anne Sajdera will be performing a unique mix of music from this dynamic confluence, as well as original works and music of American jazz masters, such as Herbie Hancock and Kenny Kirkland. As a pianist and composer, Anne Sajdera is a creative force whose music encompasses an unusually far-flung array of traditions. With musical roots spanning the globe, she melds American and Brazilian jazz to her training in European and Hindustani classical music, creating an utterly personal sound that’s melodically verdant, harmonically sophisticated and rhythmically compelling.


For more biographical information on Anne, please click here.


142 Throckmorton Ave

Mill Valley, CA 94941

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