Vocal Jazz Groups to Present Concert Celebrating University’s Theme

Oct. 6, 2017

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Illinois Wesleyan University’s Vocal Jazz Lab Ensemble and vocal jazz group, “Unlicensed Syncopation,” will celebrate the diversity of jazz in their joint concert, “Universal Language: Vocal Jazz Evolved” on Saturday, Oct. 14 at 7:30 p.m. The concert, which is free and open to the public, will take place in Presser Hall’s Westbrook Auditorium during Homecoming festivities.

Celebrating the University’s annual theme, “The Evolution of Revolution,” the concert will showcase how jazz has been influenced by singers and songwriters from a variety of countries and cultures. Featuring French, Spanish, Portuguese, and German inspired-jazz, a majority of the concert is not in English and does not incorporate swing rhythms which are a large part of traditional American styles of jazz music, said Visiting Instructor of Music Education and Director of Vocal Jazz Ensembles Andrew Dahan.

Created in 2015, Unlicensed Syncopation focuses on the study and performance of jazz in large ensemble, small ensemble, and solo settings. The group will perform Greg Jasperse’s “Voice Dance II,” Clare Fischer’s “Du, du liegst mir im Herzen,” Mattie Kallio’s Dobbin’s “Flowery Vale,” Peder Karlsson’s “Gota” and Rosana’s “Virou Areia.”

The Vocal Jazz Lab Ensemble’s performance includes Consuelo Velázquez's “Bésame Mucho,” arranged by Kirby Shaw, Jeremy Fox’s “Wind to Fly” and Julia Dollison’s and Kerry Marsh’s “The Hummingbird.” The ensemble is comprised of both music and non-music majors and performs many styles of jazz music.

The concert will also feature the IWU Treble Vocal Jazz Ensemble, a group that is comprised of women from The Vocal Jazz Lab Ensemble and Unlicensed Syncopation. The group will perform Magda Giannikou’s “Amour, t’es là?” arranged by Jeremy Landig.

At the end of the concert, the ensembles will be joined by IWU Vocal Jazz Alumni to perform Bobby McFerrin’s and Russell Ferrante’s “Freedom is a Voice.”

By Vi Kakares ’20