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Author Topic: Frost Jazz Vocal Ensembles I & II 4/8  (Read 3712 times)
Brian C. Wuttke
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« on: April 05, 2010, 08:27:31 am »

Frost Jazz Vocal Ensemble II and III
Thursday, April 8th, 8:00 pm
Location: Univ. of Miami, Maurice Gusman Concert Hall


I taught it, but did they learn?
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« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2010, 09:23:23 am »

I had to seriously rearrange my schedule to attend the Frost School of Music Jazz Vocal Ensemble concert and I am extremely happy that I did!
I have visited Gusman Concert Hall many times for different musical events, so I knew right away that I was definitely going to be in for some “good stuff.”

The concert started off with Vocal Ensemble III, directed by Rachel Lebon. The group was a sextet consisting of 2 sopranos, 2 altos, 1 tenor, and 1 bass. The instruments that accompanied them were 1 piano, 1 bass, and 1 drummer.

Their first song, “All The Things You Are,” had a one-minute voice only introduction followed by the instruments. Although the sextet had clearly practiced for their performance, one male vocalist had a solo moment where he was scat singing, and it sounded like he was improvising. I was very impressed with the first performance.

The second song “Beautiful Ballad” was not in the program. They added one guitar for this performance. The song started with two male vocalist singing solo. I was moving to the beat during this performance.

The highlight of the sextet was their last performance, “Bon-Bon Blues.” The sextet was scat singing the song, and the interaction between their voices was very impressive.I was able to pick up the AABA form in most of the songs they sang. I enjoyed seeing the interaction between the sextet and their director, it was evident that Ms. Lebon was thrilled with their performances.

The second set of performers was the Frost School of Music Jazz Vocal Ensemble II, directed by Vivian Ortega. The ensemble consisted of 18 singers, equally distributed, 9 males and 9 females, 5 sopranos, 4 altos, 5 tenors, and 4 basses. Their rhythm section included 1 pianist, 1 bassist, 1 guitarist, and 1 drummer.

In their first performance, I was able to determine that the song “Jeannine” had the AABA format. The song included 1 male and 1 female scat singing.
Their second performance was sung a cappella, “Like Someone in Love.” Their togetherness, strength of mind, and voice was felt throughout the concert hall.

They sang six other songs, so I will highlight the ones that really moved me.

“Double Rainbow” was a slow beat bossa-nova song. It featured a female soloist singing in Portuguese.

The song “Watch Out” was sung by the female singers only. They added an electric bass guitar to the performance for a solo.

My favorite performance of the evening was the song “All Feets Can Dance.” The male voices did the drums and bass sounds while the females were scat singing mixed with English lyrics. Although it was clearly a jazz song, the ensemble gave it a “rap” beat that had the crowd dancing in their seats.

For their grand-finale performance, they added 1 trombone, 1 tenor saxophone, and 2 trumpets to their rhythm section. The song “The World Goes Round” gave all performers their “solo” moment, which was a nice touch as a tribute to each of them for their hard work.

I had an excellent time at this concert. My only regret is that unfortunately, my wife was unable to attend with me. It would have been great to share this concert with her. I will be looking forward to future concerts being put on by the Frost School of Music.

Michael Fernandez
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« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2010, 08:48:59 am »

I love concert that pay electric bass guitar. This sounds like a really great concert. I think I would have really enjoyed to go . i had made plans to attend but  I was not able to make it on time, its a shame because it really sounds like an enjoyable  performance.
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