Notes to listen for from LU Jazz

Chris Swade

The LU jazz program has an exciting term ahead, with three concerts in the next six weeks.Tonight at 8:00 p.m. in the chapel, a modified LU Jazz Ensemble will be presenting Gil Evan’s classic arrangement of Porgy and Bess, made famous by Miles Davis in the 1950s.

Davis and Evans collaborated on a number of recordings during this time period, including the aforementioned piece, Sketches of Spain, and Birth of the Cool, all of which are now classics in the Jazz catalogue.

This Friday’s performance will be an excellent opportunity for all to enjoy a live performance of what LUJE director Fred Sturm calls “one of the finest works ever assembled for the large jazz ensemble.”

However, the LUJE that will be performing this Friday may not look quite the same as the usual group; Evans wrote the arrangement of Porgy and Bess for a mixture of instruments quite different from the cookie-cutter jazz big-band texture.

The work calls for a number of pieces not commonly included in jazz playing, including french horn (with LU professor James DeCorsey), numerous additional woodwind instruments, and tuba. Professor John Daniels, who has been quite busy performing with numerous ensembles since his arrival at Lawrence at the beginning of this academic year, will be featured, playing the solo trumpet part.

Porgy and Bess is the only piece on the program, which will run about one hour long.

Also coming up this term are concerts on the Feb. 12 and March 14. The February concert will feature all of the LU jazz small groups. The March concert will again feature LUJE. The theme of that show is “Nuevo Tango.” It will feature a number of Sturm’s arrangements of Astor Piazzolla works.

LU faculty members Dane Richeson (percussion), Matt Turner (keyboard), and Jos Encarnaci¢n (saxophone) will be featured in the program.

On a side note, The Lawrentian would like to congratulate Encarnaci¢n on the birth of his son, Jos Julian Encarnaci¢n, who was born at 5:54 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 27.

Look for previews of the February and March concerts, as well as a feature on Sturm, in upcoming editions of The Lawrentian.