PARK HILLS – Mineral Area College is gearing up for its 29th Annual Jazz Festival March 14.
This year’s festival will feature the vocal group New York Voices, a critically-acclaimed vocal group known for its close-knit vocalizations, inspired arrangements and vocal blend.
Michael Goldsmith, Director of Jazz at Mineral Area College, is excited about the festival this year.
“Not only do we have 27 high school and middle school performances during the day, but we have one of the biggest names in all of jazz as our guest artist, which is absolutely amazing,” Goldsmith said. “We are especially thrilled to welcome our first vocal group to this festival, and in our opinion, the best vocal jazz group in the business.”
As part of the Mineral Area College Jazz Fest March 14, New York Voices will present a master class at noon, then perform in an 8:30 p.m. concert along with MAC’s Jazz Ensemble and Kicks Band. Tickets for the concert’s reserved seats are $7 for students and $15 for adults and should be purchased in advance at the Mineral Area College Bookstore, or by calling 573-518-2106.
With deep interests rooted in jazz, Brazilian, R & B, classical, and pop, their music mixes traditional sensibilities with the unexpected. They’ve worked with arrangers and conductors who all know and admire the complexity of what they do and want something out of the ordinary. Like the great jazz vocal groups that have come before — Lambert, Hendricks and Ross, Singers Unlimited, and The Manhattan Transfer — they are firmly a part of that legacy and are dedicated to passing it on to generations to come.
New York Voices had its first performances in 1988. In 1989, the group would sign its first record deal with GRP Records and release its self-titled debut album, “New York Voices.”
In addition to its own CDs, NYV has made many guest appearances on recordings and live performances such as the Grammy Award-winning Count Basie Orchestra with New York Voices, Live at Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild (MCG Records), the Latin Grammy Award winning Brazilian Dreams with the great Paquito D’Rivera, the contemporary classical Visions Within (Robert Lepley – EarthBeat Records), Heirs to Jobim (BMG Records), Don Sebesky’s, I Remember Bill (BMG), Jim Hall’s By Arrangement (Telarc), A Love Affair – the Music of Ivan Lins (TELARC), Louisiana Purchase (DRG), and many more.
NYV has traveled the globe, amazing audiences the world over with its impeccable voices and stunning arrangements.
“Live, they’re just as impressive to witness,” says Mathew Lurrie of Time Out Chicago. “We dare say there may be no better way to understand the wit and wink of jazz harmony than via these Voices.”
Along with its extensive concert performances and recording schedules, NYV also works in the field of education, giving workshops and clinics to high school and college music students throughout the world. In 2009, the group opened the New York Voices-Bowling Green State University Vocal Jazz Camp, which admits students from all over the world at different ages and stages in their musical lives.
The foundation for the community college’s annual jazz festival was based on the hard work and commitment of the late music instructor, Carol Moore. The jazz festival was renamed in her memory after she passed away in 2008.
For more information about MAC’s jazz fest, contact Michael Goldsmith, Director of Jazz, 573-518-2230.