Posted 2 p.m. Friday, April 22, 2022

The UW-La Crosse jazz program will perform in a big band spring concert Tuesday, April 26, featuring special guest Chris Frye.

World premiere features pianist, composer Chris Frye

The UW-La Crosse jazz program will perform in a big band spring concert Tuesday, April 26, featuring a special guest. 

The event, which runs from 7:30 to 9 p.m. in The Bluffs Ballroom of the Student Union, includes performances by UWL’s Jazz Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble. 

In celebration of his recent retirement from the UWL Music Department and the establishment of a UWL jazz piano scholarship in his name, Chris Frye will perform with the Jazz Orchestra on his new Latin-Tango composition “Astoria.”

The Jazz Orchestra portion of the concert will also feature two graduating seniors in the jazz program. Lead alto saxophonist will be highlighted on Billy Strayhorn’s “Daydream,” while Selah-Marie Castellano will sing two arrangements done by Ella Fitzgerald, “All the Things You Are” and the Ellington band version of “Imagine My Frustration.”  

The remainder of the Jazz Orchestra’s diverse set will include arrangements by Al Cohn, Fred Sturm, Eric Richards and Antonio Garcia. 

The Jazz Ensemble will open the concert and feature a vocalist new to the UWL jazz program. Lauren Harkness will sing “Please Don’t Talk About Me When I’m Gone,” “Summer Wind” and Michael Philip Mossman’s bossa nova arrangement of the Antonio Carlos Jobim tune “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars.” 

The group will also perform Fred Sturm’s contemporary composition “Riverscape” and Mike Tomaro’s funk/swing version of Henry Mancini’s “The Pink Panther.” 

Both groups are led by Jeff Erickson, director of the UWL jazz program.

The event is free and open to the public. Donations to the UWL Frye Jazz Piano Scholarship are welcome at the concert.