Arts Desk

DC Jazz Festival: Cohen’s Clarinet

Anat CohenNobody will ever mistake Anat Cohen for any other clarinetist. She's got a full, round tone with a sensitive core that coasts over her accompaniment like a cork bobbing on the waves. That makes it sound lighthearted, which it assuredly can be, but always present is a certain inexpressible gravitas. That feeling, of course, is obvious in her lovely, longing ballad work, but also detectable when Cohen is clearly having the most fun on stage—and that's a lot of the time. One hears in it, perhaps, the somber notes of traditional Jewish and Eastern European music (Cohen hails from Tel Aviv, though she now lives in New York), as well as the dead-seriousness that was always the core of her strong jazz influence, Benny Goodman. But it also sounds like Cohen's own passion for what she does, a constant reminder that she's wholly devoted to her craft. Have no fear, though: She wants to share it with her, and if there's gravitas ever-present in her clarinet sound, there's also a smile always at the ready on her face. Anat Cohen and her quartet perform at 8 pm at the Sixth and I Synagogue, Sixth and I streets (duh) NW. $28.

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