Jazz Series Opens with ‘Jazz: Music of the People’


jazz tromboneCAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Oct. 5, 2015 – Southeast Missouri State University’s Department of Music will present its annual Jazz Series season opener, “Jazz: Music of the People,” on Thursday, Oct. 15, in Donald C. Bedell Performance Hall at Southeast’s River Campus.

The concert at 7:30 p.m. will feature the Department’s two jazz ensembles, student soloists and a special performance from Southeast’s jazz combo.

Pre-concert music will be performed by the Department’s newest ensemble, the Southeast Jazz Combo, which will perform a few jazz standards. Highlighting this performance will be Steven Watkins (sax), Matt Flanagan (trb), Dustin Haigler (piano) and Nick Smentkowski on bass.

The concert will open with the Jazz Lab Band playing jazz in an assortment of styles, from the rock fusion “Brass Machine” made popular by Maynard Ferguson under the title “Scream Machine” to the jazz ballad “Danny Boy” as well as the ever popular “In the Mood” from the library of the Glenn Miller Orchestra.

“This is our younger group, but they play with plenty of fire and brimstone!” said Dr. Robert Conger, Southeast professor of music.

Featured performers in this ensemble include Coco Bollig (piano), Bill Reed (trombone), Lexi Stacey (sax), Tyler Tuschhoff (trumpet), Dustin Haigler (vibes) and Collin Burnham (drumset).

Southeast’s Studio Jazz Ensemble has performed at the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival. The Ensemble has received accolades from their tour of schools in the St. Louis area as well as from local concerts at the River Campus. The ensemble played at the 2015 Elmhurst Jazz Festival in Chicago last February to great acclaim.

During this season opening concert, the Studio Jazz Ensemble will perform many varied jazz compositions from some of the greats in big band jazz. Highlighted in this concert will be “Tall Cotton” from the Count Basie library, “Red Clay” from the great Freddie Hubbard and “When I Fall In Love” penned by the great Victor Young.

“We’ll introduce our new vocalist, senior music theater major India Duff who will sing a couple of jazz standards,” Conger said.

Highlighted student soloists will include Josh Whalen (sax), Alex Wright (sax), Matt Flanagan (trombone), Dustin Haigler (piano), Kris Spala (drumset) and Daniel Atwood (guitar).


Tickets may be purchased by contacting the River Campus Box Office, located in the Cultural Arts Center, 518 S. Fountain St., weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., by calling (573) 651-2265, or by visiting www.RiverCampusEvents.com. For more information, contact Conger at (573) 651-2398.