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William Paterson University announces its 29th annual Summer Jazz Room series, featuring WP faculty and top name jazz performers. As the longest-running program of its kind in the nation, the series celebrates the complete genre of jazz—from early jazz and swing to avant-garde—presenting intimate solo performances and big bands. For over a quarter century, major performers have graced our stage. Please join us in support of live music and the WP jazz program.
Admission:$10 per evening concert•$40
for weeklong Jazz Pass
(Jazz Pass is on
sale through Thursday, July 14.)
The WP Jazz
Workshop Faculty Ensemble featuring Angelica Sanchez
JULY 18, 7:30 PM
This year the WP Jazz Workshop Faculty Ensemble features the music of accomplished pianist, composer, and educator Angelica Sanchez. She is a WP Jazz Studies alumnus who has acclaimed recordings as a leader, numerous credits as a sidewoman, is recipient of many grants, fellowships, residencies, and has recently been appointed an Assistant Professor of Music at Bard College. The ensemble is filled out with two more WP alums, drummer Jon DiFiore and trombonist Tim Newman, as well as veteran faculty members saxophonist David Demsey, and bassist Marcus MacLaurine. This evening of music should be spontaneous and fresh!
The dynamic sextet Blindfold Test, led by drummer Vanderlei Pereira is comprised of specialists in Brazilian jazz and provides an exciting journey through a varied and rich musical landscape. Pereira combines his extensive knowledge of Brazilian rhythms, popular music, and jazz to produce a drumming style that grooves hard yet has subtle shadings of color and nuance. He is also proficient on bass, piano, and guitar, and is a well-known teacher of Brazilian music. Pereira has worked with Toots Thielemans, Airto Moreira and Flora Purim, Tito Puente, and Claudio Roditi, among others. Blindfold Test’s latest CD Vision For Rhythm was released in 2020. This is bound to be a joyous and lively night of music!
LeDonne Groover Quartet with Big Beat Big Band
JULY 20, 7:30 PM
The Groover Quartet group couldn’t be more aptly named. It is a powerhouse jazz ensemble led by the brilliant organist and pianist Mike LeDonne and includes some of the most formidable players on the jazz scene: Peter Bernstein, guitar; and WP Jazz Studies alumni Eric Alexander, tenor sax, and Joe Farnsworth, drums. With this band LeDonne follows the long-standing traditions of funky, groovy, blues-infused Hammond B3 organ ensembles. For this very special performance they will be accompanied by Big Beat, a big band started by WP alums and filled with local talent. The combined groove and beat are sure to swing us out of our seats!
This concert presents two masters in duet, whose playing follows in the line of virtuoso and creative musicians on their respective instruments. Rossano Sportiello’s deft piano playing is grounded in classical studies and explores a universe of improvisation through traditional stride and swing styles. He plays locally and internationally and has produced numerous recordings; his latest solo album That’s It was released on Arbors records in 2020. Well-known clarinetist and tenor saxophonist Ken Peplowski is a voracious musician, at home with diverse styles and types of music, with over 70 recordings as a soloist and close to 400 as a sideman. This will certainly be a profound musical dialogue!
Summer Jazz Workshop Artist-In-Residence Helen Sung is a major force in the jazz world. A 2021 Guggenheim Fellowship recipient, Sung has nine albums out as a leader, and she and her band have performed at festivals in Newport, Monterey, Sydney, and at major venues like SFJAZZ, Disney Hall, Carnegie Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center Shanghai, and Blue Note Beijing. As a sidewoman, Sung has performed with Clark Terry, Wayne Shorter, Ron Carter, Wynton Marsalis, Regina Carter, Terri Lynne Carrington, Cecile McLorin Salvant, and the Mingus Big Band. Involved in music education residencies and workshops, Sung has produced a program benefiting underserved youth in Camden, NJ, has served on the jazz faculties at the Berklee College of Music and the Juilliard School, and was named jazz artist-in-residence at Columbia University’s Zuckerman Institute in 2019. This is a chance to hear a cutting-edge jazz artist’s most current work!
In an effort to
provide the tools necessary for student success in the music program
and for the University to continue to provide outstanding public
performances, The WP 88 Keys Campaignis being launched to generate support for the purchase
of a new Steinway piano for the Shea Center for the Performing Arts.
You are invited to join this campaign with a purchase of a piano key.
If you are
interested, please contact Maureen O’Connor at email@example.com
or 973.720.3990. For general support of
the campaign, click the donate button and choose