ROCHESTER, NY The award-winning Eastman Jazz Ensemble will give local audiences a preview of its upcoming New York City concert performance at the 2001 International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE) Conference at 8 p.m., Friday, December 1, in Eastman Theatre (60 Gibbs St.). The concert is free and open to the public.
The Rochester performance will include U.S. premieres of new works by Bob Brookmeyer, Jim McNeely, and Vince Mendoza. "These three composers have granted us exclusive First U.S. Performance Rights for these great new works," said Fred Sturm, director of the Eastman Jazz Ensemble. New works by Sturm as well as Eastman student composers will round out the program.
The 28th annual IAJE conference, titled "Jazz An International Language," will be held in New York City from January 10-13. The Eastman Jazz Ensemble selected to perform from a worldwide pool of professional and educational jazz artists and ensembles will play twice at the conference. The group will share the Friday (January 12) main stage with saxophonists Michael Brecker and David Liebman, trumpeter Randy Brecker, New York Voices, the 60-piece Metropole Orchestra from the Netherlands, and Trio Da Paz. Then on Saturday (January 13), the band will present a conference main stage set of manuscript works for jazz ensemble.
Sturm views the conference appearance as "the most highly coveted performance opportunity for a university jazz ensemble." An audience of 10,000 artists, educators, students, industry representatives, and jazz fans is expected for the New York event. "Hundreds of professional and school groups audition for the IAJE conference, and everyone hopes for a berth when its held in Manhattan," he said.
The Eastman Jazz Ensemble has been recognized as one of the worlds premier collegiate jazz ensembles for three decades. It has been named "Outstanding University Jazz Ensemble" in the U.S. and Canada three times in the past five years by Down Beat magazine.
Note to editors: A photo of the Eastman Jazz Ensemble is available.