SHSU Jazz Ensemble to hold concert in preparation for TMEA

This Thursday, Sam Houston’s Jazz Ensemble and other musicians will host a concert in the Gaertner Preforming Arts Center at 7:30 p.m.

Associate Professor and Director of Jazz Studies Aric Schneller discussed the coordination and direction of the rehearsals as well as the choice of music in aspects for this performance.

When asked what attendees can look forward to, Schneller listed The Daniel DuFour Trio, the SHSU Jazz Ensemble and Dr. Rod Cannon.

Schneller additionally talked about the different components of the concert.

“This event is a wonderful opportunity for students to experience,” Schneller said. “Original jazz trio compositions, transitional and modern big band music with singing and instrumental solos.”

The SHSU campus is no stranger to great jazz music. Schneller went on to talk about his work with the Bill Watrous Jazz Festival.

“We perform jazz concerts at least twice a semester in addition to our annual Spring SHSU Bill Watrous Jazz Festival, where we invite high schools from all over the state to perform and appreciate great jazz music from invited national guest artists,” Schneller said. “This year we have world-renowned Bobby Shew on trumpet with Bill Watrous for the 2016 SHSU Bill Watrous Jazz Festival.”

This is more than a routine concert. The concert is a run-through for the artists before they perform at a state convention with many prestigious musicians as an audience.

“It’s the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) Preview Jazz Concert,” Schneller said. “Basically, we’ll be previewing the program that we’ll be playing at TMEA on Feb. 10 for 2300 people at this state-wide music convention on opening night.”

The SHSU band has put in countless hours in preparation for this event.

“Students perform in many different ensembles (i.e., Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band, Brass Choir, etc. as well as chamber ensembles), so they have to practice wisely and not over work themselves,” Schneller said. “That’s hard to balance, but our students are very talented and hard-working, so they manage their time very well.”

This event isn’t just for jazz fans but for anyone who calls themselves a music lover, and wants to try something different. Schneller recommended any jazz concert because of its unique culture.

“[Students] can broaden their appreciation for America’s unique art-form of Jazz,” Schneller said. “It’s rooted in the blues and swing and if you listen hard enough, you’ll find these elements in pop music in any decade. I love this music in performance, study and practice.”

The event is $5 to all students.

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