JazzFest to celebrate Latin jazz March 20-23

03/09/2012

Afro-Cuban percussionist Michael Spiro.


Two nationally known stars of Latin jazz are returning to The University of Akron for JazzFest 2012: Tiempo Latino! on March 20-23. Afro-Cuban percussionist Michael Spiro and Puerto Rican flutist Nestor Torres will join faculty and students from the UA School of Music's Jazz Program for concerts. One concert is at Guzzetta Recital Hall and three are at the Stage Door of E.J. Thomas Performing Arts Hall. An exhibition of jazz artworks by Bahamian artist Maxwell Taylor is at the McClain Gallery.

Puerto Rican flutist Nestor Torres.


Spiro, a five-time Grammy nominee, has performed with Carlos Santana, The Caribbean Jazz Project, and the UA Steel Drum Band. He has also composed for the Broadway production Blast!

Torres, a Latin Grammy winner known for his sensual mix of Latin, jazz and pop, has been a favorite at two pervious UA JazzFests.

Both Spiro and Torres are the Bittle Jazz Artists-in-Residence for UA JazzFest 2012. Now in its 10th year, the Bittle Jazz Residency Program was established by a gift to The University of Akron School of Music from Silver Lake residents Edward L. and Frances Yates Bittle. As the Bittle Artists, Spiro and Torres will perform plus share their talents and expertise with UA music students during rehearsals, performances, master classes and one-on-one lessons.

More information about UA JazzFest 2012 is available at www.uakron.edu/music, concerts@uakron.edu, or the Thomas Hall Ticket Office at 330-972-7570.

The University of Akron’s JazzFest 2012 — Tiempo Latino!
Celebrating Latin Jazz

Tuesday, March 20, 8 p.m.
Tiempo Latino! — UA JazzFest 2012 Opening Concert
Guzzetta Recital Hall, 139 University Ave.
Concert featuring The University of Akron Student Jazz Combos. Free.

Painting by Maxwell Taylor.


Wednesday, March 21, 7:30 p.m.
Copacabana — Bittle Artist Michael Spiro and the UA Student Jazz Ensemble
Stage Door of E.J. Thomas Hall, 198 Hill St.
Big band concert featuring the UA Student Jazz Ensemble with Bittle Jazz Artist Michael Spiro. JazzFest seating at EJ's Stage Door is club style. Cash bar. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets available in advance and at the door if seats remain. $10 general, $5 students. Thomas Hall Ticket Office, 330-972-7570.

Thursday, March 22, 7:30 p.m.
Latin Jam — Bittle Artist Michael Spiro with the UA Faculty Jazz Ensemble
Stage Door of Thomas Hall, 198 Hill St.
High-energy jam concert featuring the UA Faculty Jazz Ensemble with Bittle Jazz Artist Michael Spiro. JazzFest seating at the Stage Door is club style. Cash bar. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets available in advance and at the door if seats remain. $10 general, $5 students. Thomas Hall Ticket Office, 330-972-7570.

Friday, March 23, 6 to 7:30 p.m.
Maxwell Taylor Exhibition and Reception
UA's McClain Gallery of Akron's Black History and Culture in the Buckingham Center, 220 Wolf Ledges Parkway
Bahamian artist Maxwell Taylor is renowned for his woodcuts, ceramics, etchings and acrylic paintings. Many of the pieces in this exhibition celebrate jazz musicians – a favorite subject of the artist. Join the UA Jazz Combo at the McClain Gallery for the reception before the JazzFest 2012 Finale Concert. Running through May 31, the exhibition is made possible, in part, by a gift from the trust of art collector and jazz aficionado George A. Pownall. Free. 330-972-7030.

Friday, March 23, 8 p.m.
Samba, Bossa Nova, Brazil! — JazzFest 2012 Finale Concert
UA JazzFest 2012 Finale Concert
Stage Door of E.J. Thomas Hall, 198 Hill St.
Spend a sizzlin’ night in Rio! Join Michael Spiro, Nestor Torres, Jack Schantz and more performing music of Moacir Santos, Baden Powell and Antonio Carlos Jobim. JazzFest seating at Thomas Hall’s Stage Door is club style. Cash bar. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets available in advance and at the door if seats remain. $10 general, $5 students. Thomas Hall Ticket Office, 330-972-7570.


Media contact: Cyndee Snider, 330-972-5196 or cyndee@uakron.edu.

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