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Linda Cajigas
Jacobs School of Music

Alain Barker
Jacobs School of Music

Last modified: Thursday, November 17, 2011

Jacobs School presenting jazzy Holiday Celebration concert

Nov. 17, 2011

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University Jacobs School of Music faculty and students will jazz up seasonal favorites during Holiday Celebration, a star-studded concert organizers have dubbed a "musical holiday card to the community."

The event, featuring a 62-piece studio orchestra playing big-band holiday arrangements, with vocal soloists Sylvia McNair, Heidi Grant Murphy, Marietta Simpson and Brian Horne, will begin at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 6, at the Musical Arts Center, 101 N. Jordan Ave. Admission is free but requires tickets, available from the MAC box office beginning Monday, Nov. 21.

Holiday Celebration will also include performances by the IU Latin Jazz Ensemble, directed by Michael Spiro; piano soloist Charles Webb; a faculty brass quintet; solo classical guitar; and a harp duo. Among many seasonal favorites, the program will include a special rendition of "Havana Holly Jolly," "Baby, It's Cold Outside, "Skating" by Vince Guaraldi and a faculty Dixieland band playing "Frosty the Snowman."

"It's a chance for a large segment of the music faculty and student body to perform together in one concert in celebration of the holidays," music professor and organizer Steve Houghton said. "When you bring jazz and classical together, it always has crowd-pleasing results."

"A long-held dream of Steve Houghton, this concert reflects his belief in the emerging artists and the gifted colleagues in the Jacobs School of Music," Jacobs School of Music Dean Gwyn Richards said.

In conjunction with the live concert, the Jacobs School will release a Holiday Celebration CD, available at the Dec. 6 event and online at Cost is $12. The album and tracks will also be available for download on CDBaby.

Recorded, mixed and mastered by Jacobs professors Konrad Strauss and Mark Hood, Holiday Celebration: A Jazzy Collection of Seasonal Favorites distills over 100 hours of recording sessions involving Jacobs faculty and students into 48 minutes of holiday enjoyment on 15 tracks.

"Obviously the CD is not a perfect cross-section of the full depth of talent and width of expertise found at the Jacobs School of Music, but it does provide a glimpse of the virtuosity, versatility and teamwork of its faculty and students," Hood said. "Through Steve's efforts and with the support of Dean Gwyn Richards and the administration, this might be the beginning of a new music school tradition for the holidays."

The Jacobs School of Music will live-stream Holiday Celebration: A Jazzy Collection of Seasonal Favorites through its website. Click here to connect at 8 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Dec. 6.