Nov. 30- The Southern Utah University Jazz Ensemble performed in their end of semester concert series Adventures in Time playing a series of classic and contemporary jazz pieces to an excited audience in the Heritage Center Theater.
The event kicked off with a pre-concert showcase in the lobby where jazz band students played jazzy versions of popular top 40 hits before leading the audience into the main concert. The group started off their set with a bang, holding nothing back as they played familiar jazz stand hits with their own flair.
“[Jazz] is something that is so on the spot, we have a framework but a lot of times it is more about the creative freedom in a solo that really makes it their own” said the music director Dr. Adam Lambert “we want to be able to play in the genre well but we also try to focus on improvisation”.
The ensemble was joined by the director of Choral Activities Dr. Krystal McCoy who performed alongside the group in a rendition of “Fly Me to the Moon”. As the jazz ensemble continued to build their music to match the rapt attention of the audience there were several members of the audience who began to dance, caught up in the moment of pure musical joy.
“We put in all the work all semester and all of that work is in this show’ started Pablo Suarez the Jazz Ensembles bass player. “Backstage we were talking and we said rehearsal is where we learn but on stage is really the celebration of all that work, we just want to go out with a big bang for the semester”.
With their final piece still ringing in the ears of the audience, the ensemble welcomed a warm standing ovation before starting with a short encore encouraging the audience to dance and join in in the festivities.
“I came to see my roommate play and I always knew that she was good but that, man all of them together, was just amazing!” exclaimed Freshman Aubrey White. “I am so proud of everyone, they did amazing.
The Jazz Ensemble will be hosting their next event Jazz Swing Thing on March 2, 2019, the event is open to the public and will start with swing dance lessons at 6:30 pm before the event at 7:30. For more information about the Jazz Ensemble or SUU’s music department follow this link https://www.suu.edu/pva/music/
Story by: Bayleigh Dyer
Photo by: Mitchell Quartz