NAU’s 57th Jazz Festival brings rising music stars to Flagstaff campus
Public concert is February 22 at Ardrey Memorial Auditorium
The School of Music at Northern Arizona University is celebrating the 57th year of its annual Jazz Festival with a performance line-up that will strike a chord of enthusiasm with music lovers.
The NAU Jazz Festival Guest Artist Concert—known for bringing Jazz greats to Flagstaff—continues its tradition with NAU Jazz Ensemble One performing with the Fabian Almazan Trio from New York City. The trio features Cuban pianist Almazan, with bassist Linda Oh, and drummer Henry Cole. Joining the stage is renowned saxophonist and NAU Jazz Studies Artist-in-Residence Brice Winston.
“This NYC-based trio features three of the brightest rising stars in jazz,” says NAU Jazz Studies Director Chris Finet. “All are bandleaders, composers, and educators in their own right. They collectively collaborate with some of music’s most iconic artists, including Terence Blanchard, Joe Lovano, Pat Metheny, Gary Burton, and Quincy Jones.”
Winston is co-founder of the Tucson Jazz Institute and reunites with Almazan, who is a fellow member of Terence Blanchard’s jazz group. Throughout the year, Winston is working with NAU students in lessons, masterclasses and performances.
NAU Jazz Studies has multiple big bands and small groups that are featured in concerts over the course of the festival. Students in the ensembles perform a variety of traditional big band music, original compositions and arrangements and new approaches to jazz standards. “Many students are talented improvisers and often get the opportunity to be featured as soloists,” Finet says.
Spanning three days, the NAU Jazz Festival is a non-competitive forum where high school and junior high bands perform for a panel of esteemed adjudicators, receive ratings, comments, clinics and recordings. It features world-class guest artists, clinicians, NAU faculty masterclasses and approximately 50 student bands from throughout the region.
The NAU Jazz Festival Guest Artist Concert is at 8 p.m. on Friday, February 22, in NAU Ardrey Memorial Auditorium on the Flagstaff campus. Find tickets at the NAU Central Ticket Office in the University Union, online at nau.edu/cto and by phone at 928.523.5661.
The NAU Jazz Festival 2019 featured guest artists are sponsored by the generous support of John and Lynn Schiek of Flagstaff.