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April 2001

Release Date: April 4, 2001

ASU to Present Outdoor Jazz Festival April 7

The annual Angelo State University Jazz Festival will feature the ASU Jazz Percussion Group and the ASU Jazz Ensemble as well as six groups from the San Angelo Independent School District on Saturday, April 7, on the ASU campus.

Performances by local junior high bands will start the program at 10 a.m. The festival will conclude with performances at 1:30 p.m. by the ASU Jazz Percussion Group and at 2:15 by the ASU Jazz Ensemble. All performances are open to the public free and will be conducted on the University Mall north of the Houston Harte University Center.

Other performances are scheduled at 10 a.m. by the Lincoln Junior High Jazz Band; at 10:30 a.m. by the Edison Junior High Jazz Band; at 11:00 a.m. by the Glenn Junior High Jazz Band; at 11:30 a.m. by the Lake View High School Jazz Band; at noon by Central High's Jazz Band 2; and at 12:30 p.m. by Central High's Jazz Band 1.

The Jazz Festival's outdoor setting offers a large grassy area, much of it shaded, making it ideal to bring a blanket, portable chairs, and even a picnic lunch. The festival is held simultaneously with ASU's final College Daze of the academic year and is an exciting addition to the numerous activities available to the prospective students. In case of inclement weather, all activities will be in the University Auditorium.

The ASU Jazz Percussion Group, which recently returned from a successful tour of the Chihuahua, Mexico area, will provide their unique music transcribed for vibes, marimbas, bass and drums. Group members will perform jazz that offers the visual excitement of percussion performers combined with the rhythmic accuracy typical of a percussion ensemble. This synergy, in turn, produces the best of jazz, fusion, swing and contemporary jazz. Dr. Douglas Overmier, the group's director, has been instrumental in founding this unique blend of jazz with percussion. The ASU Jazz Percussion Group is one of only six such groups in the nation.

The Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. John Irish, performs a variety of jazz styles including swing, be-bop, fusion and contemporary settings. Participation in this ensemble prepares students for performances in the world of jazz and commercial music. Improvisation is emphasized in the ensemble so that all students participate in regular "combo sessions" to improvise with a rhythm section. Students delve into the intricate mixture of melody, harmony, and rhythm on which their musical ideas are based.

For more information on the ASU Jazz Festival or other programs sponsored by the Department of Art and Music, please call 942-2085.