Central North Carolina area music lovers are in for a real treat when renowned jazz saxophonist Virginia Mayhew joins Dr. Gregg Gelb and the Heart of Carolina Jazz Orchestra for a special two-day series of concerts and classes.  The concerts are Friday, Feb. 15, 2013, at 8pm at the Temple Theatre, 120 Carthage St., in downtown Sanford, and Saturday, Feb. 15, 2013, at 7:30pm at the Halle Cultural Arts Center at 237 North Salem Street in Apex, NC.  Tickets are $15 adults and $10 students for the Temple Theatre show and $12 for the Halle Cultural Center show. Tickets will be available at the Temple Theatre Box Office, 919-774-4155, or Halle Cultural Center, 919-249-1120. In addition, on Sat., Feb. 16, from 5pm – 6 at the Halle, Virginia will give a free master class (all levels welcome). Send an e-mail to if you plan on attending.





All About says— “Who’s this Virginia Mayhew woman anyway, Dexter Gordon’s daughter? Sonny Rollins’ niece? She plays the saxophone like a blood relative of those two giants.”  

Saxophonist-composer-arranger Virginia Mayhew has been an active participant in the New York jazz scene since 1987, leading her own groups for over 25 years (quartets, quintets and a septet).   She is also the saxophonist/musical director/assistant arranger of the Duke Ellington Legacy, an 8-piece group founded by Edward Ellington II and Gaye Ellington, two of Duke Ellington’s grandchildren.

In the course of her career, Virginia has worked with such renowned artists as Earl “Fatha” Hines, Cab Calloway, Frank Zappa, James Brown, Norman Simmons, Al Grey, Junior Mance, Toshiko Akiyoshi, Doc Cheatham, Joe Williams, Leon Parker, Clark Terry, Kenny Barron, Chico O’Farrill, Ingrid Jensen, Claudio Roditi, Nnenna Freelon, and many, many others.

 Virginia has appeared in most of New York City’s major jazz venues (including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Town Hall, Jazz Standard, Blue Note, Sweet Basil, Smalls), and performed throughout the United States, Europe, the Newly Independent States, the Caribbean, Bermuda, Australia, and Southeast Asia. Virginia has also been featured as a leader at many jazz festivals, both within the United States and abroad., and has traveled twice as a representative of the United States as a Jazz Ambassador (in the tradition of Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington), once to the Newly Independent States and a second time to Southeast Asia.

Early in her career, Virginia worked with veteran trombonist Al Grey for several years. She is featured on his 1992 release, FAB (Capri), and contributed several arrangements to his 1995 CD, “Centerpiece” (Telarc).  She also worked for several years with Brazilian trumpet and flugelhorn player/ composer/arranger Claudio Roditi, and was recently part of ‘Dreamin’ the Duke’, featuring Nnenna Freelon, Harolyn Blackwell, Mike Garson, and Terell Stafford.  ‘Dreamin’ the Duke’ was performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. and at Tanglewood, as well as on the road. Virginia also freelances with many other bands in the NYC area.

In addition to her recordings with others, Virginia has six releases as a leader, all of which have received rave reviews and lots of airplay.  Music from her latest recording featuring the music of Mary Lou Williams will be performed in small and larger ensemble arrangements for the concerts.

For more information on Virginia Mayhew, please go to and/or www.renmarecordings.comVirginai-Mayhew-master-clas