JAZZ

2017 Western Illinois University Jazz Festival

 Chris Vadala

The 44th Annual Western Illinois University Jazz Festival will be held Friday and Saturday, Feb. 16 - 17- 18, 2017. On Thursday evening, there will be a jam session at the Sports Corner beginning at 7:00 pm.

Friday’s main event will be concerts by the WIU Jazz Band and Jazz Studio Orchestra  featuring Chris Vadala, Saxophone virtuoso.  Saturday will feature performances by college, high school, and junior high students.

One of the country's foremost woodwind artists, Chris Vadala is in demand as a jazz/classical performer and educator. He has appeared on more than 100 recordings to date, as well as innumerable jingle sessions, film and TV scores, performing on all the saxophones, flutes, and clarinets. A native of Poughkeepsie, N.Y., he graduated from the Eastman School of Music, earning the honor of the Performer's Certificate in saxophone as well as a B.M. in Music Education, received an M.A. in clarinet from Connecticut College, and pursued postgraduate study in woodwinds at Eastman.

Professor Vadala, Director of Jazz Studies and Saxophone Professor, is a UM Distinguished Scholar-Teacher at the University of Maryland. Previous academic appointments include teaching studio woodwinds and conducting jazz ensembles at Connecticut College, Montgomery College, Hampton University, Prince George's Community College and Mount Vernon College, as well as serving as Visiting Professor of Saxophone at the Eastman School of Music, 1995 and 2001.

Mr. Vadala's performing career has been highlighted by a long tenure as standout woodwind artist with the internationally recognized Chuck Mangione Quartet, which included performances in all 50 states, Canada, Australia, Japan, Phillipines, China, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Bermuda, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Dominican Republic, England, Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, Poland, Belgium, and Switzerland, and performing credits on five gold and two platinum albums, plus two Grammy, two Emmy, one Georgie (AGVA) and one Golden Globe Award. In addition, he has performed and/or recorded with such greats as Dizzy Gillespie, Quincy Jones, B.B. King, Chick Corea, Ella Fitzgerald, Aretha Franklin, Placido Domingo, Sarah Vaughn, Natalie Cole, Herbie Hancock, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Henry Mancini, Doc Severinsen, New York Voices, Frankie Valli, and many others. In 2009, he became a member of the Award-Winning Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, and has been the first call saxophonist with National Symphony Orchestra for many years.


Public $15; Senior Citizen $10; Youth $7; WIU Student FREE with valid University ID. Tickets available at the Hainline Box Office and at the event.

And, on Saturday, we expect our lineup for middle/junior high, senior high, and college jazz bands to be outstanding, as usual. Our guest artist/clinician will again perform with JSO on Saturday afternoon.

For band directors, check the links on this site for Jazz Festival materials (invitation, flyer, schedule, entry form, concert ticket form, and lodging information). Early registration deadline for entries is December 1st, and after that date, it will be at the higher rate.

For additional information about the Festival, please contact: University Bands, Sallee 202/204, Western Illinois University, 1 University Circle, Macomb, IL 61455; PH 309-298-1505; Fax 309-298-1499; or e-mail jazz@wiu.edu.

For the general public who wish to attend, Friday night concert tickets are available at: Hainline Theatre Box Office, Browne Hall 114, Western Illinois University, 1 University Circle, Macomb IL 61455; PH 309/298-2900. Box office hours are Monday-Friday, 12:00-5:00 P.M.

Hope to see you all there!

John Cooper, Ph.D
Director of Jazz Studies
Western Illinois University

For more information, please contact to WIU Bands Office, Phone (309) 298-1505, or Email to JB-Cooper@wiu.edu