Skip redundant pieces
KU Home  :  KU News

KU News Release


University Relations

p (785) 864-3256
f (785) 864-3339
Feb. 23, 2005
Contact: William J. Harris, KU English department, (785) 864-2534.

Award-winning jazz artist to keynote KU Interdisciplinary Jazz Colloquium

LAWRENCE -- Jane Ira Bloom, award-winning soprano saxophonist and composer, will give the keynote address for the second Interdisciplinary Jazz Colloquium at the University of Kansas at 1:30 p.m. Thursday, March 3, at the Kansas Union.

The colloquium is open to the public and runs from 8:45 a.m. to 6:15 p.m. in Alderson Auditorium with the theme "Improvising America."

Jazz scholars and artists from across the country will explore changing definitions of America and jazz through an examination of the music in its various cultural, musical and social contexts. The colloquium will take place in conjunction with the 28th KU Jazz Festival, March 4 and 5 at the Lied Center, and with "Writing, Teaching, Performing America," an interdisciplinary conference, March 3 through 5 at the Kansas Union and the Lawrence Arts Center.

Bloom, winner of the 2001 and 2003 Jazz Journalists Award for soprano sax of the year, will speak on "Improvisation: Like the Weather."

Her awards include being named in the Downbeat International Critics Poll for soprano saxophone, receiving the Charlie Parker Fellowship for Jazz Innovation and the International Women in Jazz, Jazz Masters Award. Bloom is the first musician commissioned by the NASA Art Program and was honored by having an asteroid named in her honor by the International Astronomical Union.

She will join scholars from KU and from across the country to examine music through a number of lenses, from ethnomusicology to cultural studies to musicology.

Papers being presented during the colloquium will include "Max Roach's Politics of Sound" by Matthew Sumera, University of Minnesota-Duluth liberal studies program; "Silenced But Not Silent: Asian Americans and Jazz" by Kevin Fellezs, music department at University of California, Berkeley; "After the Revolution: Archie Shepp and Rahsaan Roland Kirk in the 1970s," by Robert R. Maclean, University of Michigan history department; "The Role of Public School Teachers in Jazz History," by Adam Bush, an independent scholar from New York City ; and "Ragtime: the Jazz Before 1917," by William Harvill, KU music and dance department.

Following the colloquium, Bloom will perform with the Jane Ira Bloom quartet at 7:30 p.m. March 3 at the Lawrence Arts Center, 940 New Hampshire St.

For the full program of "Improvising America," visit the KU Interdisciplinary Jazz Group's Web site at For further information contact William J. Harris at


The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus. | (785) 864-3256 | 1314 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, KS 66045