School of Music to Hold 44th Annual Jazz Festival

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Illinois Wesleyan University’s School of Music will host its 44th annual Jazz Festival from Friday, Feb. 1 to Saturday, Feb. 2 at Westbrook Auditorium in Presser Hall. All festival events are free and open to the public.

The IWU Jazz Festival provides a unique opportunity for junior high and high school jazz bands to perform non-competitively in front of the Bloomington-Normal community, as well a chance to meet with both peers and accomplished jazz musicians.

More than 20 groups from out-of-state and across Illinois will travel to IWU to perform in front of expert jazz performers. The lineup of clinicians who will provide feedback on the bands includes: drummer Matt Endres from the University of Wisconsin, bassist Jeff Halsey from Bowling Green State University, trombonist Tim Pitchford from Lovett School in Atlanta, trumpeter Robert Sears from Illinois Wesleyan University, pianist Chip Stephens from the University of Illinois and director of Illinois Wesleyan’s Jazz Program Glenn Wilson.

The bands will perform on Feb. 1 from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Feb. 2 from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The IWU Jazz Ensemble, joined by the clinicians, will also perform at 1 p.m. on Feb. 2. The clinicians will hold an additional concert preceding the festival on Thursday, Jan. 31 at 7 p.m. in the Normal Theater (209 W North St, Normal). All concerts are free and open to the public.

For more information, please contact the School of Music at (309) 556-3061. This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.

By Rachel McCarthy ’21