Blair Big Band “Solidarity” concert coming Friday, February 23

Blair Big Band
The Blair Big Band will present a collaborative concert, Solidarity, on February 23.

The award-winning Blair Big Band, directed by Ryan Middagh, will present a special concert event on Friday, February 23, entitled Solidarity: An Evening of Creative Collaborations. The performance will feature Blair School of Music students, faculty, and alumni performers in an expansive genre-defying program.

Embracing the Vanderbilt ethos of creative teamwork and the essential communal nature of jazz, the ambitious event will include star-studded performers from across Blair’s areas of study, including cellist Felix Wang, vocalist Tyler Nelson, tubist Bethany Wiese, drummer Marc Widenhofer, vocalist Vineecia Buchanan, bassist Rob Linton, trombonist Nick Laufer, along with student ensembles the Vanderbilt Percussion Group and members of the Blair Horn Studio. Appearing as a special guest will be Vanderbilt alumnus and trombonist Roy Agee (BMus’95), whose extensive credits include performing as a member of Prince’s touring band.

Contributing to the program will be Vanderbilt Chancellor Daniel Diermeier, who will read a poem, accompanied by the Big Band.

“Our world-class Blair Big Band exemplifies Vanderbilt’s culture of radical collaboration by bringing together different members of our One Vanderbilt community, each with their own talent and perspective, to seamlessly create something new that is greater than the sum of its parts,” Diermeier said. “I am honored to be joining them for this very special event.”

Composed entirely of undergraduate musicians, the Blair Big Band has become one of the premiere collegiate jazz ensembles in the country. With a diverse repertoire that includes classic big band standards, modern jazz compositions, and original works by its members, the group has been awarded 12 DownBeat Magazine Student Music Awards and was a top-four finalist at the prestigious 2023 Jack Rudin Jazz Championship in New York.

The Blair Big Band: Solidarity concert is free to attend with tickets required, Friday, February 23, 8:00 p.m., in Ingram Hall.

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