by Linda Perry
“Free” and “spectacular” were the two words that initially caught my attention so I continued reading the notice. Come to find out, some of our UK Band alumni will be joining a performance on campus this Sunday to help send the UK Jazz Ensemble on a tour of Europe in 2011.
In fact, about 50 jazz alumni are expected to return to UK to perform in the UK Alumni Jazz Band Spectacular, which will be held at 3 p.m., Oct. 17, in the Singletary Center for the Arts. The show has names that I am already familiar with — for example, Miles Osland, director of Jazz Studies at UK, and Vince DiMartino, who spent about 20 years as the UK Alumni Distinguished Professor of Trumpet, among others. The UK Jazz Ensemble will also perform.
The ensemble is currently in fund-raising mode for its anticipated European tour, which will include playing at festivals in France, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. So while Sunday’s concert is free and open to the public, donations toward the tour will be gratefully accepted.
I spoke with Joel Lovan ’77 FA, one of the alums returning to the stage. Joel plays the bass trombone and is now retired but spent his music career working as a band director in the Fayette County School System. He also is a longtime member of the Lexington Philharmonic. He told me that the audience on Sunday will be treated to a quality performance by band alums from all walks of life, including college professors and individuals who still entertain as professionals. In addition to helping these UK students in their fund-raising effort, having alumni perform at this event has another benefit.
“Any time we can interact with the kids, it’s good for them to see that there’s life after school,” he said. “Don’t put your horn away!”
For more information about the UK Alumni Jazz Band Spectacular, contact Miles Osland at 859-257-8173 or e-mail to email@example.com