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Big Band to open for Wycliffe Gordon March 23

Jazz Big Band

When jazz star Wycliffe Gordon takes the stage at the Creatives Arts Center on Friday, March 23, the crowd will already be on its feet thanks to West Virginia University student musicians. 

The WVU Jazz Studio Big Band will open the concert for Gordon. The band includes 17 students from across the University. They regularly perform at popular Morgantown establishments including Black Bear Burritos and Morgantown Brewing Company.

“This is one of the largest concerts that the WVU big band has had in several years,” said Jared Simms, director of Jazz at WVU. “I am thrilled that we are working with WVU Arts and Entertainment to put on a show that is not only entertaining but bears a whole lot of artistic merit.”

The WVU Jazz Big Band will play a variety of music ranging from traditional Count Basie arrangements to contemporary big band sounds and modern music.

A highly acclaimed trombonist, Wycliffe Gordon can scat, multi-note, slide and plunge just like he stepped out of the 1930s. A son of the classical jazz era, he is best known for his work with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra under the direction of Wynton Marsalis. Gordon’s arrangements and compositions range in style from Louis Armstrong to hip-hop laced with Deep South jazz roots soul. His high-energy, traditional hard-swinging style captivates audiences whether he’s performing before dignitaries and heads-of-state or elementary school children. He has 50 recordings (23 as co-leader) to his credit, as well as 14 citations as the world’s finest trombone player.

The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. March 23. For tickets, call 304-293-SHOW or visit ticketmaster.com.