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Chad Baldwin
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UW Jazz Festival Concerts March 27 and 28

March 25, 2014 — Outstanding student instrumentalists and vocalists from throughout Wyoming will join guest artists in concert during the University of Wyoming Jazz Festival Thursday and Friday, March 27-28, in the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts concert hall. 

The Outstanding Vocal Jazz Choir and Wyoming All-State Jazz Choir will perform with guest artists David Scott and Kelsey Shiba Thursday, March 27, at 7:30 p.m. in the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts concert hall. 

The Outstanding Student Instrumental Jazz Ensemble will perform with guest artists Michael Rodriguez and Damani Phillips Friday, March 28, at 7:30 p.m., also in in the concert hall. 

Both concerts are free and open to the public.

The festival’s goals are to provide great music with outstanding and positive jazz education, says Professor Scott Turpen, director of jazz studies at UW.

“The festival promises to be an enlightening and enjoyable experience for students, teachers and audience members,” he says.

The guest artists:

Singer/songwriter and pianist David Thorne Scott is associate professor of voice at Boston’s Berklee College of Music. In 2006, he received a Berklee Faculty Fellowship and Recording Grant to study, transcribe, perform and record vocal group arrangements from the 1930s and 1940s. His arrangements for jazz choir are published in the "Classic Vocal Jazz" series by Hal Leonard Corporation.

Vocalist Kelsey Shiba studied violin and piano from a young age, and began singing and playing trombone and guitar in her teens. Her love for music spans many genres, including jazz, classical and pop. Shiba studied vocal performance as an undergraduate and jazz studies as a graduate at the University of Northern Colorado.

Trumpet/composer Michael Rodriguez studied guitar and trumpet at the prestigious New World High School of the Arts in Miami, and continued his trumpet studies with a full scholarship at the University of Miami, and then at New School University in New York. He has performed with Bobby Watson, Quincy Jones, Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, pop icon Jessica Simpson and Harry Connick Jr.

Alto saxophonist Damani Phillips currently serves as assistant professor of jazz/African-American studies at the University of Iowa, where he directs jazz combos and teaches courses in African-American music, jazz history and improvisations. He has taught and performed throughout the United States, England and Japan.

Trumpet player Michael Rodriguez of New York City will perform during the student instrumental concert Friday, March 28, at 7:30 p.m. in the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts concert hall.  (

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