FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 10, 2003
CONTACT: Jette Englund
Office of University Relations
Kean University's Wilkins Theatre Raises the Curtain for "Jazz Pictures" Featuring
Kean Affiliate Artist Andy Fusco and the Walt Weiskopf Sextet.
UNION, N.J. Stay tuned for a unique jazz experience in Kean University’s
newly remodeled Wilkins Theatre. Renowned jazz musicians will present
a concert, Jazz Pictures, on Thursday, December 11, at 8 p.m.
in the 950-seat theatre on the main campus at 1000 Morris Avenue in Union,
The program, reflecting great art, will feature Kean’s affiliate
artist in saxophone and jazz, Andy Fusco, who will present the eminent
Walt Weiskopf Sextet, of which Fusco is a member. The concert is the second
in this year’s Affiliate Artist Concert Series. It will feature
a single composition, Weiskopf’s Sight to Sound, made possible
by a grant from Chamber Music America’s New Works Creation and Presentation
Program, funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
Sight to Sound is a multi-movement work with each section reflecting
a famous artist or aspect of the graphic arts. The movement titles are:
Salvador [for Dali]; Pablo [for Picasso]; Sight,
Sound, Vincent [for Van Gogh], Canvas, Toulouse
[for Henri Toulouse-Lautrec]; and Camille [for Pissarro]. The
use of first or nicknames as movement titles is a reflection of a practice
in the jazz community of identifying great musicians with only their colorful
first names, like Dizzy, Miles, Ornette and Thelonius. Sight to Sound
will be performed as a multi-media presentation; images and great art,
appropriate to each musical section, will be projected as the band plays.
“Walt” and “Andy” are also musicians of the highest
caliber, and Weiskopf, a tenor saxophonist, is famous in other than jazz
circles. He tours regularly with Steely Dan. Recognized as composer and
teacher, Weiskopf has received three grants from the National Endowment
for the Arts to Fund New York performances of his music. He has given
clinics and concerts at the Paris Conservatory, the Richard Strauss Conservatory
in Munich, Germany, and at a number of outstanding music schools in the
United States. He has lectured and coached at the Manhattan School of
Music, the Eastman School of Music, The Aaron Copland School of Music,
and is currently on the faculty at New Jersey City University.
Fusco, in addition to being an affiliate artist at Kean where he runs
its jazz program, is the leader of several of his own jazz ensembles,
and he also performs with the John Pizzarelli Octet, well known for it
Foxwoods Casino commercial and CD. Fusco first came to fame as a member
of the Buddy Rich Big Band. From 1978 to 1983, he was the lead alto saxophonist
of the band and has since toured with a number of esteemed performers
including Gerry Mulligan, Mel Lewis and Frank Sinatra.
Weiskopf and Fusco are linked in a number of ways. They are both internationally
acclaimed. Weiskopf credits Fusco as being a mentor and an important influence.
Both performed with Buddy Rich. They often perform in small ensembles
together, and both musicians have CDs that have been awarded 4 ½-star
reviews in Down Beat Magazine.
Admission is $10, and tickets are available at the door and from the
Wilkins Theatre Box Office at 908-737-SHOW (7469). Discounts are available
for students, alumni, faculty, staff and seniors.