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Air Force influences shape Winter Jazz Concert

January  31, 2012

Joseph Ott, director

The Augustana Jazz Ensemble will present its winter concert on Friday, Feb. 3, at 8 p.m. in Centennial Hall (3703 7th Ave.). This concert is free and open to the public.

The program, led by director Joseph Ott, will showcase a wide range of jazz big band repertoire. “The concert will feature a few classic transcriptions from the 1940s and ’50s,” said Ott, an adjunct instructor in music. “I feel the students gain a great deal of insight by performing note-for-note replicas.”

Two pieces—Tommy Dorsey’s “Marie” and the Woody Herman Orchestra’s “I Got News for You”— feature vocalist Pat Nelson, a senior majoring in music performance and composition from Naperville.

“One of the most challenging pieces of the concert is an extremely sensitive ballad called ‘When I Fall in Love,’” said Ott. The piece was arranged by Alan Baylock for the Airmen of Note, the premier jazz ensemble of the United States Air Force Band.

Ott knows the music of the Air Force Band well. He has been a performer and director of jazz ensembles for the United States Air Force Band for more than 20 years. Prior to his extensive military service, Ott was a member of the Red Skelton Orchestra, Glenn Miller Orchestra and the Tony Bennett Orchestra. He also held positions with the Virginia Symphony and Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra.

“I am extremely proud of all our students for the willingness to explore what I consider America’s only true art form, jazz,” said Ott. “The students work hard, and it shows in the music.”

Sam Schlouch
Director, Public Relations and Arts Promotion
(309) 794-7833
samschlouch@augustana.edu