Big Bands, Bebop and Beatles: Fall Jazz Night at OU

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Jazz fans will be treated to everything from bebop to The Beatles during the Ohio University School of Music’s Fall Jazz Night on Friday, Nov. 16 at 8 p.m. in Templeton-Blackburn Alumni Memorial Auditorium.

The evening will include performances by Jazz Ensembles I and II and the Jazz Percussion Ensemble.

Ohio University Professor of Saxophone and Jazz Studies Matt James is directing Ensemble I, which will feature a mix of original and classic selections.

“We’ve got an arrangement of The Beatles’ ‘Here Comes the Sun,’ plus originals for big band: Thad Jones’ ‘Big Dipper,’ a nice jazz waltz by up-and-coming arranger Chris Madsen entitled ‘With Gratitude’ and a Latin jazz original by Matt Harris named ‘Mira Mira,’ originally written for the Maynard Ferguson orchestra,” he said.

The Jazz Percussion Ensemble is directed by Visiting Professor of Percussion and OU alumnus Joseph Van Hassel. The group will perform selections by Pat Metheny, Charles Mingus, Joe Zawinul and Chick Corea.

“Joey is filling in as a sabbatical replacement for faculty member Roger Braun and doing a great job,” said James.

Friday’s audience should expect a combination of precise and exciting ensemble work, inspired individual improvising and a variety of music styles, according to James.

“I hope [the audience] takes away a newfound appreciation for jazz in all its many forms…it’s a music that is always adapting and embracing current trends across the musical spectrum.”

The concert is free and open to the public. For more information, visit