Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA's student jazz ensembles prepare for final fall performance

November 13, 2013 - Robbie Goodrich

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Swingin' Axes and Swingin' Aces, Stephen F. Austin State University's two student jazz ensembles, will perform their final concert of the fall semester at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22, in the Ed and Gwen Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

The Swingin' Axes, SFA's premiere jazz band under the direction of Dr. Gary Wurtz, professor of trumpet and jazz studies, will perform a slate of exciting compositions that will "represent jazz dating back to Count Basie as well as some of the most cutting edge modern styles," according to Wurtz.

The Swingin' Axes will open its portion of the concert with Billy Byers' arrangement of "All of Me," as performed by Basie's band, and will close with a modern arrangement of Radiohead's "Bodysnatchers." Among the other works to be performed will be an arrangement of Horace Silver's "Nica's Dream" and two movements of Mike Tomaro's "Nightowl Suite."

To open the concert, Dr. Deb Scott, associate professor of trombone and jazz studies, will lead the Swingin' Aces with Bill Liston's "Blues to Begin With." Two Swingin' Aces students will be featured in the program. P.J. DeJesus, Lufkin junior, will perform Sammy Nestico's composition "Katy" on flugelhorn. Freshman Jonathan Bowers of Fort Worth will perform Nestico's arrangement of "God Bless The Child" on trombone.

"The Aces will also perform a clever, swinging chart called 'Bleep Blop' by Les Hooper and a funk shuffle by Fred Sturm called 'Street Music,'" Scott said.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students. For tickets or more information, visit www.finearts.sfasu.edu or call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 486-6407.