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David Benoit's career as a contemporary jazz pianist has included more than 25 solo recordings. Among his Grammy nominations are for Best Instrumental Composition and Best Large Jazz Ensemble Performance. In 2010, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the American Smooth Jazz Awards.
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Ocean Institute fires up Jazz Celebration this weekend


The Ocean Institute at Dana Point Harbor presents its 10th-anniversary Jazz Celebration fundraiser Friday and Saturday, featuring performers Rick Braun, David Benoit and Mindi Abair, a wine and appetizer reception and a gala gourmet dinner and show.

Friday's sold-out opener will include a reception at 6:30 p.m. featuring wine from Pear Valley Vineyards and appetizers provided by Il Fornaio, followed by a concert at 7:30.

Saturday's gala will start at 6 p.m. with a silent auction with appetizers by the Balboa Bay Club & Resort and the Park Hyatt Aviara resort and wine from Pear Valley Vineyards. That will be followed by a live auction and a four-course dinner prepared by chefs from the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort & Spa, Laguna Cliffs Resort & Spa, Montage Laguna Beach and The Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel. A concert is scheduled for 9 p.m.

Tickets to Saturday's event are $500 per person and $6,000 to $7,200 for a table of 12. All proceeds will benefit the Ocean Institute.

For tickets or to learn more, visit www.ocean-institute.org or www.ocjazzfestival.com, or contact Eileen Hayden at 949-496-2274, ext. 413, or ehayden@ocean-institute.org.

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