Jazz pianist and composer Laura Caviani, ’84, will return to her alma mater this week as a guest performer at the second annual Lawrence Alumni Jazz Showcase.Since her graduation, Caviani has performed and recorded, releasing numerous albums and receiving acclaim from critics of Jazz Times and the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. She has received commissions from the Central Wisconsin Symphony Orchestra as well as the Kansas City Symphony Orchestra. Caviani has served on the faculties of St. John’s University, the UW-Eau Claire and several schools in Minneapolis. In 1998, she was one of only four Americans permitted to study at the Akiyoshidai International Art Village in Japan.
Current faculty members Dane Richeson and Mark Urness, neither of whom were here at Lawrence at the same time as Caviani, will also be performing at the showcase. This mixture will foster growing relationships between current faculty and alumni.
Also performing with Caviani is John Harmon, class of 1957 graduate and the first director of jazz studies here at Lawrence. Harmon is something of a musical hero to Caviani and she is very pleased to be able to perform with him. Fred Sturm, current director of the jazz and improvisational music department, hopes that it will be possible to have different alumni perform for the showcase each year.
This year’s program will include selections by Thelonious Monk, Jean Sibelius, and of course, Caviani herself. The Lawrence Alumni Jazz Showcase will be in Harper Hall on Monday, Oct. 25 at 8 p.m.