LAWRENCE – Before heading off to a whirlwind ten-show, 13-day tour in Europe, the KU Jazz Ensemble I, directed by Dan Gailey, will give a preview concert on Monday, July 2 at the Lied Center of Kansas.
Featuring Kansas City-based jazz vocalist Deborah Brown, the free concert on July 2 will be at 7:30 p.m. No tickets are required.
Leaving for Europe on July 3, KU Jazz Ensemble I will perform at three of the world’s most prestigious jazz festivals: the 52nd Annual Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, 38th Annual Jazz `A Vienne in France and 48th Annual Umbria Jazz Festival in Italy. The group will also play in Italy at Scarperia Jazz Festival in Florence as well as performances at the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory of Music in Milan and shows in Stresa and Torino.
Brown will perform with the jazz ensemble throughout Europe. A frequent guest artist of the jazz ensemble, Brown has sung in more than 50 countries and has recorded 11 albums. An artist honorarium for Brown’s performance at the Lied Center and in Europe has been provided by Reach Out Kansas, Inc., the Law Firm of Smithyman & Zakoura and the Zakoura Family Fund, a fund of the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation.
Other KU faculty guest artists include Steve Leisring, professor of trumpet; Brandon Draper, percussion lecturer; and KU School of Music Dean Robert Walzel, on clarinet.
“Palos Nuevos,” a flamenco suite composed by Gailey and most recently performed by the jazz ensemble at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in April, will be among the works performed at the Lied Center and on the European tour.
The award-winning KU Jazz Ensemble I, currently made-up of 21 students who will travel to Europe, is the premier ensemble of the KU Jazz Studies program. In 2014, the KU Jazz Ensemble I performed eight shows on an 11-day European tour that included the Montreux Jazz Festival and Jazz `A Vienne Festival. In 2016, the ensemble performed with Brown at Jazz at Lincoln Center and were one of six college finalists to perform at the 2017 Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival.
For more information on the July 2 concert, go to lied.ku.edu or contact the Lied Center by calling 785-864-2787 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about the KU Jazz Ensemble I or the European tour, contact the KU School of Music at 785-864-3436 or visit www.music.ku.edu.
Photo: The KU Jazz Ensemble I performs at Jazz at Lincoln Center in 2016 with featured vocalist Deborah Brown. Credit: Dan Storey, KU Alumni Association.
KU Jazz Ensemble I