Thursday, August 25, 2011
OU musicians to showcase their talents at the Detroit Jazz Festival
The Oakland University Department of Music, Theatre and Dance is both excited and proud to send a number of its talented musical ambassadors to Labor Day weekend's Detroit Jazz Festival on the riverfront near Hart Plaza.
On Sunday, Sept. 4, noted jazz violinist and MTD alumna Regina Carter will make the first of two appearances at the festival with her Reverse Thread band. She will join the OU Jazz Band to perform on the Mack Avenue Waterfront Stage the very next day.
According to accomplished jazz bassist Miles Brown, who serves as OU's jazz program coordinator and who will be musical director for the jazz festival performance, the ensemble will play tunes from a diverse repertoire that includes "Blue Bird," "Make it Good," "Repetition," "Mandingo Street," "Don't Get Sassy," "Love Theme from Spartacus" and "Azure."
Brown noted that the performance will be a unique and rewarding experience for OU's young musicians, and said he is thrilled "to bring the band down there and showcase our talents."
Oakland music education major and OU Jazz Band member student Quincy Stewart is a seasoned performer who has played the jazz festival before. He said he is looking forward to joining both Carter and his fellow band members in expressing themselves musically for an audience of jazz devotees.
"We are all people with souls and different things to say," Stewart said. "Growing as a musician is in lockstep with growing in life; the key is to develop your sound, your unique voice."
Detroit's is one of the few remaining free jazz festivals in the country. In a poll in Jazz Times earlier this year, it was voted among the top four jazz festivals in North America and was the only completely free festival so honored. Last year the festival drew an audience of 750,000 people. To learn more about the annual event, visit detroitjazzfest.com.
To learn more about programs and projects offered by OU's Department of Music, Theatre and Dance – including the OU Jazz Band – visit oakland.edu/mtd.