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How crazy do you have to be to keep a Jazz Age enterprise going in the 21st Century?

Bandleader, historian and collector Vince Giordano created the period music in Todd Haynes' Carol, Martin Scorsese's The Aviator, Francis Ford Coppola's The Cotton Club, half-a-dozen Woody Allen films including his upcoming Cafe Society and HBO's Grammy-winning series Boardwalk Empire. A New York institution for nearly 40 years, Vince and his eleven-member band The Nighthawks bring the hot, syncopated music of the 1920s and ’30s to life with their virtuosity, vintage musical instruments and Vince's encyclopedic collection of over 60,000 period band arrangements. But between the moments of glory on stage, there is the constant struggle to find gigs, manage personnel and shlep a van full of equipment and 400 lbs of music to every job, with no road crew. Meltdowns occur and the threat of going out of business constantly looms. Vince Giordano — There's a Future in the Past captures the hard work, endurance, and joy of being true to one's calling.

“Vince Giordano is Hollywood’s go-to guy to authentically re-create vintage jazz music.” – The Wall Street Journal

Vince Giordano — There's a Future in the Past (New York Premiere)
Directed and Produced by Dave Davidson & Amber Edwards

Join Vince Giordano, Bill Charlap and  filmmakers Dave Davidson and Amber Edwards in conversation followed by Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks in performance



Artist Bio

Vince Giordano, film subject/panelist/performer

Born in Brooklyn, Vince Giordano’s passion for the big band era and its key figures began at the age of five. He has amassed an astonishing collection of over 60,000 band arrangements, 1920s and ‘30s films, 78 rpm recordings and jazz-age memorabilia.

Mr. Giordano’s passion, commitment to authenticity, and knowledge led him to create a sensational band of likeminded players, the Nighthawks. Together, the Grammy Award-winning Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks have kept alive an amazing genre of American music from an era that shaped our nation. They have played at New York nightclubs as well as the Town Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center and the Newport Jazz Festival, among many others. They have regularly appeared on 92Y’s Lyrics & Lyricists series; on January 21-23 they will open the series’s 2017 season in “Get Happy: Harold Arlen’s Early Years.” They can be heard every Monday and Tuesday at Iguana NYC, located at 240 W. 54th Street.

Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks have appeared in numerous films and television programs, including Woody Allen’s latest film, Café Society; Francis Ford Coppola’s The Cotton Club; Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator; Gus Van Sant’s Finding Forrester; Sam Mendes’ Revolutionary Road; HBO's Boardwalk Empire, USA’s Royal Pains; and PBS’s Michael Feinstein’s American Songbook. They have provided music for the soundtracks of several other Woody Allen films as well as Todd Haynes’ Carol, Robert DeNiro’s The Good Shepherd, Sam Mendes’ Away We Go, and HBO’s Grey Gardens and Mildred Pierce. Their website is

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Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks

Andy Stein, violin/baritone sax
Mike Ponella, trumpet
Jon-Erik Kellso, trumpet
Jim Fryer, trombone
Chuck Wilson, alto sax/clarinet/soprano sax
Mark Lopeman, tenor sax/clarinet/soprano sax
Dan Levinson, alto sax/clarinet/soprano sax
Peter Yarin, piano
Ken Salvo, guitar/banjo
Christ Gelb, drums
Vince Giordano, string bass/bass sax/tuba

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Vince Giordano—There’s a Future in the Past

Vince Giordano—There’s a Future in the Past made its world premiere at the Manchester (UK) International Film Festival in March 2016, where it won the Best Music Score award. Its USA premiere followed a month later at the Kansas City FilmFest. Future screenings include Upstate Films, Rhinebeck, NY, on July 24-27; the Jacob Burns Film Center, Pleasantville, NY, on Aug 11; and Andrews Memorial Hall, Clinton, CT, on Aug 20.

The film is directed and produced by Dave Davidson and Amber Edwards of Hudson West Productions, a not-for-profit independent production company dedicated to making documentaries about the arts, history and education. Its website is

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Dave Davidson, filmmaker/panelist

Filmmaker and media educator Dave Davidson’s most recent documentary, A Gesture and a Word (2016), follows the brilliant singer/ songwriter Rob Morsberger in the final 18 months of his life after being diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, during which he produced four new and insightful albums. In 2013 Mr. Davidson directed Hans Richter: Everything Turns— Everything Revolves, a profile of the iconic DADAist and experimental filmmaker, which premiered at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, followed by screenings in Washington, DC, and Berlin. In 2015 he received an NEA Art Works grant to create “Rescoring Richter,” a transmedia project that invites contemporary musicians to compose new sound environments for Richter’s avant-garde films from the 1920s and ‘30s.

Mr. Davidson has directed several documentaries for PBS, including A Place Out of Time—The Bordentown School (2010); Cissy Houston—Sweet Inspiration (1988) and The Dancing Man—Peg Leg Bates (1992). His numerous awards and honors include an American Film Institute Independent Filmmaker Grant and an Emmy Award, Since 1984 he has been professor of film at The City College of New York (City University of New York) in Harlem.

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Amber Edwards, filmmaker/panelist

Amber Edwards was producer and director of the award-winning nine-episode PBS series, Michael Feinstein’s American Songbook; the co-producer and director of photography was her Hudson West partner, Dave Davidson. Her previous PBS documentaries include George Segal: American Still Life; Against the Odds: Artists of the Harlem Renaissance; and Words and Music by Jerry Herman, which was screened at 92Y and was followed by a Q&A with Mr. Herman. For 21 years she was senior producer and host of NJPT’s long running weekly series, State of the Arts, earning her 13 regional Emmy Awards.

As a singer Ms. Edwards can be heard on the Grammy Award-winning soundtrack of the HBO series Boardwalk Empire, and she sang in tributes to Mack Gordon and Johnny Mercer for 92Y’s Lyrics and Lyricists. A graduate of Yale University, she is the founding producer and artistic director of Yale Musical Theater of the Air, an award-winning alumni initiative that brings together professional Yale theater alumni with students, faculty, and staff to present classic American musicals in concert, including Kiss Me, Kate; My Fair Lady and The Music Man.

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Bill Charlap, Jazz in July artistic director/panelist

One of the world’s premier jazz pianists, Bill Charlap has served as artistic director of 92Y’s Jazz in July summer festival since 2005, and he has produced concerts for Jazz at Lincoln Center and the Hollywood Bowl. He has performed with such leading artists as Phil Woods, Benny Carter, Scott Hamilton, Gerry Mulligan and Wynton Marsalis. Since 1997 he has led the acclaimed Bill Charlap Trio, with bass player Peter Washington and drummer Kenny Washington. The Trio tours all over the world, and earlier this year they released their latest album, Notes from New York.

Renowned for his interpretations of American popular songs, last year Mr. Charlap joined Tony Bennett to produce The Silver Lining: The Songs of Jerome Kern, which won a 2016 Grammy Award. He has also recorded albums featuring the music of Hoagy Carmichael, Leonard Bernstein and George Gershwin. Among his other recordings are Love Is Here to Stay and Something to Remember with his mother, the Grammy-nominated vocalist Sandy Stewart; and Intimate Portrait, a duopiano album with his wife, pianist Renee Rosnes. His website is

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