Jazz Artist Series opens 14th season with pianist ...

Jazz Artist Series opens 14th season with pianist LaVerne

Pianist Andy LaVerne, who’s worked with a veritable “Who’s Who” of jazz, will launch the 14th season of the MTSU Jazz Artist Series on Thursday, Oct. 25, in Hinton Hall inside the Wright Music Building.

Pianist Andy LaVerne, inaugural guest artist for the 14th season of MTSU’s Jazz Artist Series, rehearses in this publicity photo. (photo submitted)

The performance is set for 7:30 p.m., and public admission to the concert is $15 at the door. MTSU students, faculty and staff with valid IDs will be admitted free.

The MTSU Jazz Artist Series brings internationally renowned jazz artists to the region each year for performances and educational workshops.

“Past guest artists for the series have included some of the most important jazz musicians and educators in jazz history,” said Jamey Simmons, professor of jazz trumpet and director of jazz studies at the MTSU School of Music.

“LaVerne is really an important voice in contemporary jazz, bringing the jazz tradition to the stage while at the same time expanding into new territory through his original compositions and arrangements. He also is known as a teacher of the music, which will give our students an insight into the art of one of the masters.”

MTSU music faculty performing with LaVerne will include Simmons on trumpet, Don Aliquo on saxophone, Jim Ferguson on bass, Derrek Phillips on drums and Pat Coil performing a piano duo with the guest.

LaVerne, who studied at Juilliard, Berklee and the New England Conservatory, has worked with the greats of jazz: Frank Sinatra, Stan Getz, Woody Herman, Dizzy Gillespie, Chick Corea, Lionel Hampton, Michael Brecker, Elvin Jones and more.

In addition to the Oct. 25 concert, a free artist’s clinic with LaVerne is scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 3 p.m. in Room 101 of MTSU’s Saunders Fine Arts Building.

The MTSU Jazz Artist series will continue its 2012-13 season on Feb. 14 with the MTSU Jazz Faculty Nonet performing music from Miles Davis’s legendary “Birth of the Cool” and on Feb. 23 with the MTSU Jazz Festival, featuring composer and arranger Bill Holman.

Discount admission also is available for area high school and middle school music students. To reserve tickets, call 615-898-2724 or email

For more information on any MTSU School of Music performances, please call 615-898-2493 or see the complete listing of concerts at at the “Calendar of Events” link.