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Jazz Concert Benefits UNH–Alternative Break Challenge

February 17, 2010

Area residents will be able to experience an exciting slice of New Orleans when Michael White and the Original Liberty Jazz Band perform at Johnson Theatre as part of the UNH Traditional Jazz Series. The concert takes place Monday, March 1, at 8 p.m.

A renowned clarinetist and jazz scholar, White formed the Original Liberty Jazz Band in the early 1980s to “preserve the heritage of New Orleans music.” The band has performed all over the world, spreading the good sounds and feelings of New Orleans. In addition to White, the ensemble includes: Gregory Stafford, trumpet/vocals; Lucien Barbarin, trombone; Detroit Brooks, banjo; Steve Pistorius, piano; Herman Lebeaux, drums; and Kerry Lewis, bass.

All proceeds from the concert will support the UNH’s Alternative Break Challenge, the student run organization that each year sponsors service learning trips during Spring Break. More than 140 students are scheduled to work with Habitat for Humanity and similar organizations at locations from South Florida to Kansas City, Missouri. And appropriately enough, this year’s trips include one to New Orleans and another to nearby Waveland, Mississippi; those students will participate in post-Hurricane Katrina clean-up and rebuilding activities.

White holds the Keller Endowed Chair in the Humanities at New Orleans’ Xavier University, where his teaching focuses on Afro-American music. He is renowned for his scholarly work and celebrations of the music of Jelly Roll Morton, Sidney Bechet, Johnny Dodds, and George Lewis. He continues to produce new music that unmistakably references traditional New Orleans sounds. In addition to work with his own ensemble, White has served as resident artist with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and plays with the New Orleans-based Young Tuxedo Brass Band.  He has mentored scores of musicians, including Wynton and Branford Marsalis, Terence Blanchard and Donald Harrison.

Tickets to the event are $8, general admission, and $6 for students and seniors, and are available at the MUB ticket office, at the door one hour prior to the concert, online at http://www.unhmub.com/tickets or by calling 2-2290.

The 2009-2010 Traditional Jazz Series’ season comes to a close April 12 with the appearance of the critically acclaimed Steve Wilson Quartet. Wilson represents a new generation of historically informed jazz musicians dedicated to passing on and expanding the language of jazz.

The series is co-sponsored by the UNH music department and the New Hampshire Library of Traditional Jazz. The library, established in 1978 by Dorothy Prescott, comprises books, recordings, and memorabilia and is housed at the Dimond Library.  Prescott's generous endowment funds its activities including the Traditional Jazz Series concerts.

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