Accomplished jazz alumni perform Feb. 14
Feb. 9, 2001
KALAMAZOO -- The Jazz Studies Program in the WMU School of Music will welcome back to campus two distinguished alumni on Wednesday, Feb. 14, beginning at 8 p.m. in the Dalton Center Recital Hall.
Since leaving WMU in 1995 and 1997, respectively, saxophonist John Wojciechowski and pianist Xavier Davis have established themselves in the jazz world. They return to WMU to perform with their former teachers and mentors, members of Western Jazz Quartet. Three of the quartet's members will perform: Tom Knific (bass), Tim Froncek (drums), and Trent Kynaston (saxophone).
General admission tickets will be available at the door for $10 each. Students and senior citizens will be charged $5.
In 1996, Wojciechowski was selected as a finalist in the Thelonious Monk Jazz Competition, an international event. Of his performance, Chicago Tribune reviewer Howard Reich wrote that Wojciechowski was "versatile, gifted...musically profound, technically accomplished and harmonically daring."
Wojciechowski resides in Detroit where he spends his time teaching, playing, and writing. He serves on the teaching faculties of Roseville Schools, Macomb Community College, and Cranbrook Educational Community.
Xavier Davis is an accomplished musician, composer, and arranger. Last year he received a grant from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation to compose an extended work for the New Jazz Composer's Octet. His debut recording, Dance of Life, was released on Metropolitan Records in 1999. Down Beat magazine awarded the CD four stars in its January 2000 issue and said, "Davis steps out with an accomplished debut."
During the 19992000 season, Davis worked with the Boy's Choir of Harlem as its musical director. He has performed with many of today's great jazz musicians, including a two-year stint with legendary vocalist Betty Carter. Xavier has also worked with trumpeter Tom Harrell since June 1997, appearing on Tom's latest RCA Victor release, Time's Mirror.
John and Xavier's return to WMU on February 14 will provide them the opportunity to perform with their former teachers and mentors, the Western Jazz Quartet, a resident faculty ensemble. Three of the quartet's members will perform: Tom Knific (bass), Tim Froncek (drums), and Trent Kynaston (saxophone). Wednesday's concert will begin at 8:00 p.m. in the Dalton Center Recital Hall. General admission tickets will be available at the door for $10 each. Students and senior citizens will be charged $5.
This same ensemble performing at the Dalton Center on Feb. 14, minus Kynaston, will travel to Grand Rapids, Mich., on Thursday, Feb. 15, to perform at the "BOB" for a live radio broadcast on WGVU. That performance is scheduled to begin at 8:30 p.m. They will then journey to Interlochen, Mich., the following night to perform at the Interlochen Arts Academy. There, they will be joined by guest artist Bill Sears (saxophone).
Media contact: Kevin West, 616 387-4678, firstname.lastname@example.org