Green Country Jazz Series Wraps With Byron Stripling

TAHLEQUAH – The 2007-2008 Green Country Jazz Series at Northeastern State University ends in high fashion with the residency of world-renowned trumpet virtuoso Byron Stripling. Stripling will appear in concert with the NSU Jazz Ensemble on Wednesday, April 9, at 8 p.m. at the NSU Jazz Lab.

One of the highlights of my career so far was the opportunity to meet and perform with Byron, and I’m certain that his performance will be a career highlight for our students as well,” said Arthur White, NSU director of jazz studies. “His energy and enthusiasm are infectious, and his playing is simply marvelous.

Stripling was a featured soloist and lead trumpet player with the Count Basie Orchestra, under the direction of Basie, Thad Jones and Frank Foster. He has also recorded and toured extensively with the bands of Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Herman, Dave Brubeck and Lionel Hampton, among others. An accomplished actor and singer, Stripling was chosen to portray the legendary Louis Armstrong in the Broadway-bound “Satchmo.” He was the featured soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra for the PBS television special “Evening at Pops,” and has since become a pops favorite, having performed with the New York Pops, Pittsburgh Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, the American Jazz Philharmonic, and many others. Stripling serves as the artistic director and conductor for the highly acclaimed Columbus Jazz Orchestra, and is well known as a motivational speaker throughout the world.

Stripling will be featured with the NSU Jazz Ensemble I, the flagship ensemble of the NSU Jazz Studies Program. The band is celebrating the release of their recent CD, “The Point,” and has appeared in concert recently with Bobby Watson, Scott Wendholt, Henry Johnson, Mulgrew Miller, Kevin Mahogany and Bob Mintzer, among others. The band’s second CD, “Appointment in Milano,” was named one of the top 10 university jazz CDs of 2006. “The Point” was recently named to the allaboutjazz.com Best of 2007 big band CD list.

Having Byron Stripling in Tahlequah will be the perfect way to end a remarkable performing series,” said White.

Tickets for the general admission show are $12 for general admission or $6 for students, and can be reserved by calling (918) 444-4603. Byron Stripling will present a free masterclass, open to the public, the day of the show at 3 p.m. at the Jazz Lab. The concert is supported with a grant from the Oklahoma Arts Council, with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Stripling will also appear at Verdigris High School the following night, Thursday, April 10 at 7:30 p.m., with students from the Verdigris Jazz Band and the NSU Jazz Ensemble.

“The Point” can be purchased online at www.cdbaby.com, or at the NSU Jazz Lab for $12, and will be available the night of the show. For more information on the album or concerts, contact Arthur White at 444-4602.

3/31/2008

 
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