Bob Thompson (Brian Blauser/NPR)
Bob Thompson (Brian Blauser/NPR)

Concerts, Guest Artists On Tap For Athens Jazz Festival

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The Ohio University School of Music is hosting the 2013 Athens Jazz Festival this Friday through Sunday, featuring OU jazz ensembles, student ensembles from area high schools and guest artists Rob Parton (trumpet) and Bob Thompson (piano).

Rob Parton is highly regarded as a studio, theater and jazz musician, performer, educator and bandleader. His recorded and live work includes stints with Tony Bennett, Mel Torme, The Beach Boys, Celine Dion and many others.

Parton has traveled with Natalie Cole and most recently was a featured member of the “Music Now” series offered by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He has presented concerts or clinics at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago, International Association of Jazz Educators convention, MENC and many other music educators conventions and has earned national and international accolades for his seven albums on the Sea Breeze Jazz label.

Bob Thompson has had a professional career that has spanned more than 30 years and reached audiences around the globe. From his early days with the Modern Jazz Interpreters to an acclaimed series of solo albums on Capitol and Ichiban, to his latest work with his five-member Bob Thompson Unit, Thompson has won the respect and praise of jazz critics and fans alike. With appearances on BET, NPR’s Mountain Stage and several tours abroad, Thompson has been a visible presence in the jazz world for decades.

All weekend events are free and open to the public. For more information about this and other School of Music Events,

The Athens Jazz Festival is co-sponsored by ARTS/West, Stuart’s Opera House, Athens Area Citizens for the Arts and CA House Music.


Friday, April 12

7:30 p.m. Jazz Spoken Here – ARTS/West (free)

Saturday, April 13

8 a.m. – 5 p.m. High School Festival – Baker Center Theater

10 a.m. OU Jazz Combo II (Jordan Reed, director) – Bobcat Lounge

10:45 a.m. OU Jazz Combo I (John Horne, director) – Bobcat Lounge

1 p.m. OU African Ensemble (Paschal Younge, director) – Bobcat Lounge

1:45 p.m. Bob Thompson Jazz Workshop – Bobcat Lounge

2:45 p.m. Rob Parton Jazz Workshop – Bobcat Lounge

4 p.m. Thompson & Parton rehearsal with OU Jazz Ensemble I – Memorial Auditorium

7:30 p.m. Concert featuring guest artists Bob Thompson (piano) and Rob Parton (trumpet) with Ohio University Jazz Ensembles I and II  (free) – Memorial Auditorium

Sunday, April 14

7:30 p.m. OU Jazz Combos I and II – Jackie O’s Pub and Brewery (free)