Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Cleveland Jazz Orchestra Headlines Maplerock

Ashland University’s award-winning jazz program is proud to present the 41st Annual Maplerock Jazz Festival slated for Friday, March 20. Along with free performances by nine area school jazz ensembles from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., the event presents a main stage concert at 7:30 p.m. in Hugo Young Theatre which will headline The Cleveland Jazz Orchestra.

The Jazz Festival's evening concert will open with the Ashland University Jazz Orchestra under the direction of Dr. Scott Garlock fresh off of their tour to Spain. Dr. Garlock will then switch roles and take the stage as lead trombonist in The Cleveland Jazz Orchestra (CJO).

For 35 years, The Cleveland Jazz Orchestra has been Northeast Ohio’s premier jazz voice. Led by Paul Ferguson as the artistic director, the CJO promotes jazz in its historical and contemporary forms, through concerts with gifted jazz musicians, arrangers, composers and educators in northeast Ohio. The CJO aims for worldwide recognition in cooperation with guest artists, and looks to shepherd young musicians toward the future of jazz. Their 2019-2020 season exemplifies this mission and vision through a variety of new music, new compositions and arrangements, and a stellar line-up of well-known guest artists and young up-and-coming talent.

Paul has played with the CJO since 1988 and was named the artistic director in CJO's 31st season. Before joining CJO, Paul traveled with and arranged for the Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller Orchestras. Recognized as one of the leading jazz composer/arrangers of his generation, he was recipient of the Gil Evans fellowship in Jazz Composition in 1995 and was the sole American finalist at the ART-EZ Jazz composition contest in Enschede, Holland in 2012. His works have been recorded by various radio orchestras in Europe and his arrangements for Pops orchestra are performed internationally. His most recent recordings are “Encounter”, “Rays of Light” and “Big Band Christmas.” A graduate of the Eastman school and the University of Akron, Paul is Senior Instructor in music at Case Western Reserve University.

Along with Ferguson and Garlock, the CJO roster includes saxophonists Howie Smith, Brad Wagner, Christopher Burge, John Klayman, Johnny Cochran and George Shernit; Jack Schantz, Theresa May, Dave Banks and Joseph Miller on trumpet; along with Chris Anderson, Paul Hungerford and Chas Baker on trombone. The rhythm section consists of pianist Jackie Warren, bassist Aidan Plank, and Jim Rupp on drums. Evelyn Wright will perform vocals for the CJO concert.

In addition to the evening concert, CJO members will conduct a public clinic with nine high school bands that will perform earlier in the day in Hugo Young Theatre. After each high school band performs their 30-minute concert, the guest artists will meet with the band and offer their expertise to strengthen the ensemble and individual musician's performance. The Jazz Festival's afternoon performances are scheduled as follows:

11:30 a.m. MidOhio Jazz Lab
12:00 p.m. Crestview High School Jazz Band
12:30 p.m. Lake High School Jazz Band
1:00 p.m.   Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School Jazz Band
1:30 p.m.   Ashland High School Jazz Band B
2:00 p.m.   MidOhio Jazz Combo
2:30 p.m.   Rittman High School Jazz Band
3:00 p.m.   Galion High School Jazz Band
3:30 p.m.   Ashland High School Jazz Band A

The afternoon performances are free and open to the public while tickets for the evening concert are available through the Ashland University Box Office at 419.289.5125, 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, or online (additional fees apply) at www.ashland.edu/tickets.

Tickets for the evening concert are $10 for adults; $5 for senior citizens, non-Ashland University students and Ashland University faculty and staff; and free for Ashland University students.

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