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Performed in Old Cabell Hall, on Grounds at U.Va.
Part of the McIntire Department of Music
The U.Va. Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of trumpeter John D’earth, will present Fall Fiesta! Latin Jazz and Beyond on Saturday, November 3rd, at 8pm in Old Cabell Hall. Fall Fiesta! Latin Jazz and Beyond will include numerous latin jazz arrangements along with some straight-ahead swingers like Slide’s Derangement, written by Slide Hampton for Maynard Ferguson’s “Little Big Band,” and the Count Basie chestnut, Li’l Darlin’, by Neal Hefti. Tenor saxophonist Jeff Decker, of the Free Bridge Quintet, will appear as a special guest on several numbers including the John D’earth original, Markets, composed as part of his extended work, Green Chemistry, which the band premiered two seasons ago. The evening will include a mix of classic and new compositions. Dizzy Gillespie’s latin jazz anthem Manteca, Horace Silver’s Nutville, from his album Cape Verdean Blues, and Bobby Brookmeyer’s Samba Con Getchu, composed for the Thad Jones – Mel Lewis Orchestra, are well known to jazz audiences. New arrangements of Michael Brecker’s¬ African Skies and Pepper Adams’ Trentino will also be presented. Fall Fiesta will party with an ebullient dance extravaganza, Merengue Loco, which has become a kind of “Good Old Song” for the Jazz Ensemble, over the years.
D’earth is enthusiastic about his new band, which boasts a robust mix of new and returning members. “I’m very excited about a new trumpet soloist we’ve recruited named Harrison Frye,” D’earth said. “The man can play some jazz!” Mr. Frye is a graduate student in Political Science, newly arrived from Princeton where he was a featured soloist in Princeton’s big band as an undergraduate.
“We are also very lucky to have found four excellent new rhythm section members,” says D’earth. “Kris Monson on bass, drummer/percussionist Shaun Galvan, and pianists Gabe Planas and Dustin Nguyen will be joining our veteran drummer Kendrick Smith and our wonderful guitarist, Ian Dansey.”
Other new members are bass trombonist Bo Forehand, Connor Smith on Euphonium, trumpeters Lauralee Yeary and Christophe Lejeune, and tenor saxophonists James Copeland and Tyler Lebore.
The Fall Fiesta concert will be part of a mini-jazz festival in Old Cabell Hall that weekend: on Sunday, November 4th at 3:00 pm the Free Bridge Quintet (U.Va.’s faculty jazz quintet) will present its first ever matinee performance featuring the world-renowned pianist, Cyrus Chestnut, as their special guest.
The high-octane latin jazz of Fall Fiesta kicks off a particularly exciting year of concerts for the Jazz Ensemble. On February 23rd the band will partner with poets Margo Figgins and Gregory Orr for some extended spoken word collaborations. And, in the spring, their April 27th concert will present three very special guests, pianist Kait Dunton, bassist Lisa Mezzacappa, and baritone saxophonist Kathy Olson, all of whom are alumnae of the Jazz Ensemble actively pursuing careers as jazz performers and recording artists.