11/16/2004

Contact: Becca Ramspott, School of Fine Arts, (785) 864-5567

KU Jazz Vespers offers special renditions of holidays classics Dec. 2

LAWRENCE – Jazz aficionados looking for a new twist on holiday favorites may want to mark their calendars for 7:30 p.m. Dec. 2, when the University of Kansas' annual Jazz Vespers holiday concert returns for its third year at the Lied Center of Kansas.

The event will include special jazz interpretations of holiday classics and will feature top ensembles from the KU jazz studies program, as well as special guest soloists.

“It’s a fun way to celebrate the holiday season with versions of traditional holiday music that you probably won’t hear elsewhere," said Dan Gailey, director of jazz studies. "And we always throw in a surprise that’s not listed on the program.”

The concert will include performances by Jazz Ensemble I and KU Jazz Singers, both directed by Gailey; Jazz Ensemble II, directed by James Hudson, associate director of bands; and KU Vocal Jazz Ensemble, directed by Eric Foley.

Tickets are $12.50 for adults, $10 for students and seniors, at the Lied Center Ticket Office, (785) 864-2787; the Murphy Hall Box Office, (785) 864-3982; and the SUA Box Office in the Kansas Union, (785) 864-SHOW.

-- The program will begin with the KU Jazz Ensemble II performing “O Christmas Tree,” arranged by Tom Kubis, and “Greensleeves,” arranged by David Metzger.

-- Next the KU Vocal Jazz Ensemble will perform “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” arranged by Steve Zegree.

-- KU Jazz Ensemble I will follow with “Sleigh Ride,” arranged by Dave Samuels and featuring Larry Maxey, KU professor of clarinet, and Linda Maxey on marimba.

-- Then the KU Jazz Singers will perform “O Come, O Come Emmanuel,” arranged by Jeff MacFarland, and “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town,” arranged by Jeremy Fox.

-- The evening concludes with KU Jazz Ensemble I’s versions of “We Three Kings,” arranged by Alan Blaylock; “Winter Wonderland,” arranged by Bob Washut; a special rendition of “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen” arranged by Gailey; and as a grand finale, a seven-minute version of Peter Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker Suite,” arranged by Les Brown.

For additional information on the concert, call the Department of Music and Dance, (785) 864-3436.

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