Jazz Night at SU

Come join us for a great night of Jazz at the Frank Arts Center Theater, Tuesday, November 2 at 8:00 PM, with the Shepherd University Jazz Ensembles. Directed by Dt. Kurtis Adams, the SU Ensembles will perform a wide range of exciting music featuring works by Dean Sorenson, Arthur Herzog and Billie Holiday, Sam Nestico, Milt Jackson, Charles Mingus, Bill Evans, Maria Schneider, Horace Silver and others. Also featured on the program is the Shepherd University Faculty Jazz Quartet with Dr. Kurtis Adams on saxophone, Dr. Mark Cook on piano, David Marsh on bass and Ronnie Shaw on drums.

Originally from Tennessee, Dr. Kurtis Adams moved to Boulder after receiving his Bachelor of Music Education degree from Tennessee Tech University, to pursue his Master of Music in Performance and his Doctor of Musical Arts in Jazz Studies from the University of Colorado. As an integral part of the Colorado music community, he performed with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Colorado Music Festival Orchestra, Ultraphonic Jazz Orchestra, Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra, and the 9th and Lincoln Orchestra and shared the stage with great musicians including Arturo Sandoval, Paquito D'Rivera, Greg Gisbert, Pat Bianchi, Jeff Jenkins, Brad Goode, Peter Sommer, and Paul Romaine. As a member of the Jazz Ensembles at CU, he performed with guest artists such as Joe Lovano, Conrad Herwig, Jiggs Whigham, Tom Harrell, Bobby Shew, and Bob Mintzer. In 2005, Downbeat Magazine named Adams College Co-winner for Best Original Composition for his composition "Instable Mate?" and in 2007 he was selected to participate in the Paquito D'Rivera Latin Jazz Workshop performing with the Grammy-winning saxophonist at Carnegie Hall in New York. While on the music faculty at Gordon College, Dr. Adams continued as a freelance performer in Atlanta, Georgia. He was Visiting Assistant Professor of Jazz Studies at Boise State University before joining the Shepherd University music faculty this fall as Director of Jazz Studies.

Dr. Mark Cook has played trumpet in various chamber groups, including the Mt. Vernon Chamber Orchestra, the Trinity Chamber Orchestra, the MC Symphony Orchestra (principal), the MC/Rockville English Brass Band (solo cornet and flugelhorn), and the Camerata Brass Quintet. He has numerous arranging and composing credits, most recently for Chris Vadala's CD, Out of the Shadows. As a jazz pianist, Mark Cook performs extensively throughout the region, as well as with Shepherd University Faculty Jazz and his own group, Set Theory. Cook's latest CD, Prime Form, has received critical acclaim. Cook has performed with Bill Potts, Chris Vadala, Jamey Aebersold, Vaughn Nark, Tim Eyermann's East Coast Offering, Mike Crotty and Deater O'Neill, Rufus Reid, Bob James, J.R., Monterose and many others. He has also played exactly four choruses of the blues with the legendary Al Cohn. Formerly the Director of Jazz Studies at Shepherd University, Cook serves as Director of Music Theory and Composition and continues to serve on the Jazz Faculty. He has also taught at Towson University, Catholic University of America and Montgomery College.

David Marsh, Shepherd University's jazz bass instructor, was a child prodigy who studied at the Duke Ellington School of the Performing Arts. Marsh is a highly sought-after bassist in the Metropolitan region and formerly taught Jazz Studies and Jazz Bass at George Washington University He has performed with many nationally- and internationally-known artists such as Ricky Loza, Tim Eyermann’s East Coast Offering, Vaighn Nark, Chris Vadala, and many more. He is the Bassist for Cook, Dixon, and Young (formerly "The Three Mo' Tenors"), with whom he has recorded PBS specials and toured nationally and internationally.

Shepherd University jazz drum instructor Ronnie Shaw performed with the prestigious USAF Academy Band and the USAF Band, Washington D.C., and conducted clinics as percussion specialist for the Air Force. After leaving the U.S. Air Force, he has continued as a professional musician, as well as a teacher of percussion and drum set, and has taught several drum set jazz and rock music camps. In 2002 he joined the nationally acclaimed "The Three Mo' Tenors," now known as Cook, Dixon, and Young. Along with The Tenors he has performed with The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, The Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, The Washington Opera with Placido Domingo, and the prestigious Los Angeles Philharmonic, and Chicago Symphony orchestras. He has performed for and conducted clinics at the annual Ricky Loza jazz festival in El Salvador. Shaw's fluid drum style has been readily adaptable to all types of music, and he has played with world renown and talented musicians including Nancy Wilson, Kenny Burrell, Barry Harris, Joe Farrell, Steve Gadd, Jonathan Moffit, Shirley Caesar, Bobby Shew, Miles Jaye, Keter Betts, Herbie Mann, James Moody, Steve Barta, Little Anthony, The Coasters, Vaughn Nark, and country and western great Charlie Daniels.

The Shepherd University Jazz Ensemble has performed throughout the East Coast and Europe and is in great demand as a feature band in Jazz Festivals around the globe. Invited to the world-renowned Montreux Jazz festival in 2003, The Jazz Ensemble played throughout Switzerland and Italy on a 9-day concert tour. In 1999, the band took their Ellington Tour to England and France. In the United States they have been featured at the Longwood, the Blue Ridge, and The East Coast Jazz Festivals, as well as regional festivals throughout Virgina, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey.

General admission to Jazz Night is $10 for adults, $5 for students, faculty, staff, and free to Shepherd students and Friends of Music MAC Cardholders. Admission and seating is first-come first-serve and reservations are not taken. Box office opens one hour prior to performance. Cash or Check only please. For more information call 304-876-5555 or visit www.shepherd.edu/musicweb.