Preceded at 5 p.m. by Dizzy Gillespie 
(Directed by Les Blank, USA, 1965, 22 min.) 

This year marks the centennials of jazz giants Thelonious Monk (1917–1982) and Dizzy Gillespie (1917–1993). To celebrate these incomparable artists, MFAH Films presents a pair of cinematic portraits that capture them in performance and candid footage from the 1960s. Thelonious Monk: Straight, No Chaser is a fascinating documentary by director Charlotte Zwerin (Gimme Shelter) that mixes unearthed 1968 footage of the enigmatic pianist and composer with interviews of those who knew him best.

The feature is preceded by Les Blank’s earliest music film: a lively, 1964 verite portrait of Dizzy Gillespie­ that finds the trumpet player in casual conversation, performance, and rehearsal with Stan Kenton’s orchestra. Gillespie, along with Monk, Charlie Parker, Sonny Rollins, and others, sparked the change from traditional jazz to bebop in mid-1940s America.

► Parking update: A new underground parking garage, located at 5101 Montrose, is now open. Learn more about changes to visitor parking and plan ahead for your visit.

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Charlotte Zwerin
Running Time
90 minutes
Digital, Color