“On the Sunny Side of the Street”
We should begin with a couple of stories.
A woman was overheard making a phone call to a friend to express her appreciation for WIU’s JSO. She said, in her thick New York accent, “They were fabulous! And they had some nice Italians too!”
My wife was in the cafe located next to the stage to get a drink of water. She noticed a woman holding a baby and struggling to make a bottle.
“Would you like some help?” Gretchen asked.
“No, I’m ok thank you,” was the woman’s reply.
As Gretchen stood next to the woman, they both watched the video feed, and talked about babies, bottles, and the city, the woman asked what Gretchen’s connection was to the event that evening.
“I’m here with Western Illinois University’s Jazz Studio Orchestra,” Gretchen proudly said.
“Oh! They were amazing! I’m a classically trained musician, and I think we are all prima donnas in that field. What I love about jazz is that, you aren’t just learning your piece, you are are learning teamwork, too. But, everyone still gets their day in the sun. They were incredible.”
These interactions illustrate the impact Jazz Studio Orchestra had on its audience. These talented students picked up their instruments long ago to channel their creativity, to express themselves through an art form, and to follow their passion. Their energy, passion, and love of music resonated throughout Carnegie Hall.
From their arrival on stage, to the lively audience participation, to the standing ovation at the concert’s conclusion, it was an unforgettable evening for JSO, their family and friends who were a part of it.
May 30th, 2010 by Phil Weiss
JSO waiting patiently for an early sound check. Concert is Sunday May 30th 2010
Noon was the call time for JSO’s rehearsal with Marco Renzi & Bepi D’Amato at Carroll Music. Wonderful music filled the studio as JSO, along with the guest musicians, played with unmatched passion. It was, in a word, beautiful.
Tomorrow for the first time in the history of Carnegie Hall, Italian jazz musicians will perform on stage. JSO will be alongside them. The Western Illinois University’s family and the JSO families couldn’t be more proud.
It was a beautiful morning as we left Macomb for New York City by way of O’Hare. A diesel leak required a brief stop in Peoria to switch buses. Though delayed a bit by some thunderstorms our flight to NYC was smooth. Tomorrows itinerary begins at 12 noon with a rehearsal with the guest musicians. The band is very excited to play with them.
May 27th, 2010 by Phil Weiss
The Western Illinois University premier jazz ensemble, the Jazz Studio Orchestra (JSO), under the direction of John Cooper, director of jazz studies, is booked at one of the world’s greatest concert halls – Carnegie Hall – at 8 p.m. Sunday, May 30
May 27th, 2010 by Phil Weiss
For those of you who would like to hear Bepi D’Amato click below
By Patrick Stout
Posted May 21, 2010 @ 05:34 AM
“Practice, practice, practice!” That’s the punchline to the old joke about what the New Yorker said to the tourists who asked him the way to Carnegie Hall.
Well, practice does indeed make perfect, and now Western Illinois University’s Jazz Studio Orchestra is about to pack up and head out to America’s premiere performance venue. The students got the invitation because of the hard work they did with two guest artists on campus last spring.
By Erin McCarthy
Posted May 19, 2010 @ 05:00 AM
After four years of performing in the Western Illinois University Jazz Studio Orchestra, recent WIU graduate and trombonist Michael Musto is about to realize a dream that few musicians experience: playing on New York’s Carnegie Hall stage.
“I’m still in awe about it,” said Musto, of Naperville. “I don’t think it’ll really soak in until we’re on the flight back.”
Musto and the rest of the WIU JSO found out about the rare opportunity on the first day of rehearsal in January when Director John Cooper broke the news.
The WIU Jazz Studio Orchestra (JSO) has received the honor of an invitation to perform at one of the worlds greatest concert halls – Carnegie Hall – and is scheduled to appear with composer Marco Renzi and clarinetist Beppi D’Amato on May 30 at 8:00 p.m. Renzi and D’Amato served as artists in-residence in April 2009 for the School of Music Jazz Studies program at Western. “Maestros Renzi and D’Amato wanted to work with us again based on the wonderful performance that they gave in Macomb with the JSO and Jazz Band,” said John Cooper, director of jazz studies and the JSO.
from Julie Murphy, Director, Foundation Communications/Donor Stewards
The cold weather couldn’t stop the hot jazz performed by not only the Jazz Studio Orchestra but piano performances by Ben Bergmark and Steve Solomon. And guitar greats, Marcos Rios and Evan Desaulnier.
Special thanks to the Macomb Country Club for hosting this wonderful event. Big thanks to everyone who came out and enjoyed the evening.
Tonights New York Fundraising Event will be held inside at Macomb Country Club Dining Room due to the weather.
May 8th, 2010 by Phil Weiss
May 4th, 2010 by admin
From: WesternIllinoisU | April 09, 2010 | 90 views
To the many people in the Macomb community who have supported the jazz program. Our talented students in JSO have been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall over the Memorial Day weekend with Italian composer Marco Renzi , and clarinetist Bepi dAmato.
To help with the expense of taking the JSO to Carnegie Hall, the Macomb Country Club will host a fund raising event on May 8th. Everyone in the community is invited to enjoy the beautiful facilities of the Macomb Country Club and be entertained by students in the jazz program as well as the JSO during the evening.
May 4th, 2010 by admin
MACOMB, IL – - The Macomb Country Club will host a fundraiser Saturday, May 8 to help the Western Illinois University’s premier jazz ensemble, the Jazz Studio Orchestra (JSO), with traveling expenses to New York City for an invited engagement with composer Marco Renzi and clarinetist Bepi D’Amato.
“Because so many people in the Macomb community have supported the jazz program, I’m excited to announce our talented students in JSO have been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall over the Memorial Day weekend,” said School of Music Professor John Cooper, who is director of jazz studies at Western.
Everyone in the Macomb and surrounding communities is invited to enjoy the facilities at the Country Club while being entertained by the Jazz Studio Orchestra and other students in jazz studies from 5-10 p.m. May 8 on the outside patio. Between 5-8 p.m. the Country Club will have giveaways every half hour. Admission, $20 per person, includes live jazz and a hors d’oeuvres buffet.
Renzi and D’Amato served as artists in-residence in April 2009 for the School of Music Jazz Studies program at Western, giving lectures and master classes, as well as conducting and performing in a combined WIU Jazz Studio Orchestra and Jazz Band concert.
“Maestros Renzi and D’Amato wanted to work with us again based on the wonderful performance that they gave in Macomb with the JSO and Jazz Band,” Cooper said.
“Students did their own fundraising. Jerry and LaNae Reyburn, parents of JSO student Andrew Reyburn (junior, Geneseo, IL), committed a sizeable donation that has been matched by the IBM corporation, and there has been funding from other private resources, for which we are indeed grateful,” he added. “But we still need more money to fully fund this incredible opportunity for the JSO to play at Carnegie Hall. I am so thankful the Macomb Country Club has generously offered this venue for the May 8 fundraiser.