Eastman School of Music performers, both faculty and students, will again take to the stage for numerous sessions of the Rochester International Jazz Festival, and Eastman faculty will give tips to aspiring young musicians during a special jam session geared to 14-to-19-year-olds.
The “Jazz Jam for Kids (14-19) @Eastman” will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 21, the last day of the Festival, with faculty from both the Eastman School and the Eastman Community Music School joining the teens to play and provide feedback. Sign-up is on a first-come basis in Room 120 of the Eastman School’s Main Hall for the opportunity to play with professional musicians, including guitarist Bob Sneider, bassist Jeff Campbell, drummer Rich Thompson, trumpeter Mike Kaupa, pianist Paul Hofmann, percussionist Howard Potter, and others.
Also of special interest to local residents is the annual Rochester International Jazz Festival/Eastman School of Music Scholarship Concert on Monday, June 16, in Eastman Theatre. The scholarship is awarded annually to area high school seniors who plan to pursue jazz studies at Eastman School after graduation. This year’s recipients are Evan Henry and Adrian DiMatteo of the School of the Arts and Daniel Ziemann of Williamsville East High School. The evening begins with a performance by the Eastman Community Music School’s Youth Jazz Orchestra, conducted by Potter, at 7:30 p.m. The scholarship award presentation will be made at 8 p.m., followed by the Eastman Jazz Ensemble under the direction of Dave Rivello.
The scholarship concert features two renowned musicians originally from this area. Saxophonist Pat LaBarbera and drummer Joe LaBarbera are brothers who were born in Mt. Morris. Pat has worked with Elvin Jones, Buddy Rich, and Woody Herman; Joe has worked with Woody Herman, Chuck Mangione, Bill Evans, and Tony Bennett.
Eastman faculty with gigs during the Rochester International Jazz Festival include Sneider, who will be doing nightly jam sessions at the State St. Bar & Grille at the Rochester Plaza Hotel; composer and conductor Rivello, whose ensemble will be appearing at Christ Church on Friday, June 13; pianist Dariusz Terefenko, who’s performing with the Smugtown Stompers on Saturday, June 14, and Sunday, June 15, on the Mary Jemison boat on the Genesee River; percussionist John Beck, who is retiring this spring after almost five decades on the Eastman faculty and appears in the Robert Mondavi Big Tent on Sunday, June 15; and Campbell, Thompson, and trumpeter Clay Jenkins, who will perform as Trio East on Saturday, June 14, at Max of Eastman Place. Campbell is also appearing in “Gillespiana,” a tribute to Dizzy Gillespie directed by Jeff Tyzik, on Tuesday, June 17, in Eastman Theatre.
NeoCollage, a group formed in 2004 by five Eastman School of Music students, is a new age classical-crossover group that will play on Sunday, June 15, on the City of Rochester Jazz Street Stage (Gibbs Street is renamed “Jazz Street” for the duration of the Festival). The Ben Britton Band, headed by a May Eastman graduate, will appear on the Jazz Street Stage on Saturday, June 21. Performances by Eastman Community Music School ensembles playing during the Festival include, all on Jazz Street: New Horizons Big Band on Friday, June 13; Combo Showcases on Tuesday, June 17, and Thursday, June 19; Saxology, under the direction of Jose Encarnacion, and a Big Band Night, featuring the music educator’s jazz ensemble and the Eastman Youth Jazz Orchestra, both on Wednesday, June 18; and Latin Jazz on Friday, June 20. The Eastman Youth Jazz Orchestra will also be appearing in the Big Tent on Thursday, June 19.
In addition, Eastman School is hosting a prestigious music think tank during the Jazz Festival that will include presentations by Eastman and University of Rochester faculty. The annual Mannes Institute for Advanced Studies in Music Theory will hold sessions examining “Jazz Meets Pop” from Sunday, June 15, to Wednesday, June 18. Harold Danko, chair and professor of jazz studies, and Joyce McDonough, chair of the Department of Linguistics, will do a special presentation on their study comparing relationships between the speech patterns and musical rhythms of Jelly Roll Morton and Louis Armstrong in performance. John Covach, professor of music theory and chair of the College music department, is conducting a three-day workshop to examine ways of analyzing the structure in rock music.
The full schedule of performers and venues for the Rochester International Jazz Festival is online at www.rochesterjazz.com. The Eastman School of Music has been involved with the jazz festival since it was founded in 2002.
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