OMAHA – Hundreds of young musicians from across the Midwest will have the opportunity to learn and perform with master musicians at the 2018 Great Plains Jazz Festival hosted on the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) campus.
On Friday, Feb. 23, and Saturday, Feb. 24, more than 50 visiting jazz bands and ensembles from middle schools and high schools across Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri and South Dakota will learn from nationally-renowned educators, clinicians and guest artists. Each day will culminate with participants joining world-recognized musicians in a live concert performance.
This year’s guest artists are Rick Hirsch’s Big Ol’ Band and Indrikis Veitners, who will perform on Feb. 23 at UNO’s Milo Bail Student Center, as well as Chris Potter, who will perform on Feb. 24 at The Holland Performing Arts Center. Both concerts occur at 8 P.M.
Tickets are currently available for Rick Hirsch’s Big Ol’ Band and Indrikis Veitners at a cost of $15 for general admission and $5 for students or band directors. Tickets can be purchased on the UNO website.
Tickets for Chris Potter’s performance are currently sold out.
Additional details can be found at music.unomaha.edu/jazz-festival.
Critics have hailed Rick Hirsch’s music as “audacious, seductive, sumptuous, and [occasionally] raucous,” with his Big Ol’ Band recently breaking into the jazz scene with their debut album “Pocono Git-Down.” Hirsch’s music highlights the individual personalities of his band-mates, all of whom are long-time friends and top-flight musician-educators, mostly residing in small cities and college towns.
Indrikis Veitners is a performer and educator who is well known in his native Latvia. Currently, he serves as an associate professor and the head of the Jazz Department at Jazeps Vitols Latvian Music academy. He has been featured on 15 records since 1995.
Chris Potter is a Grammy Award-winning, world-class soloist, an accomplished composer and formidable band leader. Potter has been recognized as “a figure of international renown” by “Jazz Times” and celebrated by many elder statesmen of jazz. He has produced 15 albums as band leader and was recognized with a Grammy Award in 1999 for his solo work on “In Vogue,” a track on Joanne Brackeen’s album “Pink Elephant Magic,” and was featured prominently on the 2000 Grammy-winning album “Two Against Nature” by Steely Dan.
Returning once again for 2018, in coordination with Omaha Performing Arts, is the 2018 Student Jazz Combo Competition, which provides outstanding student ensembles a chance to perform as the opening act for a Jazz on the Green concert as well as perform for Minneapolis jazz band Davina and the Vagabonds.
For media inquiries, please contact Charley Steed, UNO associate director of media relations, at 402.554.2129 or email@example.com.