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Bethlehem, PA--The Moravian College Music Institute is holding the 7th annual July Jazz Getaway week from Sunday July 11 to Saturday, July 17. This year’s July Jazz Getaway’s feature artist is jazz great Bobby Watson who will perform in concert with the Moravian College Big Band and jazz ensemble on Thursday, July 15 at 8:00 p.m., in the Foy Concert Hall on Moravian College’s Church Street Campus in historic Bethlehem. Bobby Watson will also conduct an instructional workshop on Friday, July 16 at 10:00 a.m.
Bobby Watson, an alto saxophone jazz player, is known for his bright, almost brassy, phrased in continuous lines, punctuated by his trademark swoop down the scale. He has headlined at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and at international jazz festivals. Watson is a consistent Critic’s and Reader’s pick in the music polls. With his current ensemble, Bobby Watson & Urban Renewal, he has added a tenor sax and flute to his repertoire.
Watson trained at the University of Miami along with Jaco Pastorios, Bruce Hornsby, and Danny Gottlieb. He later became musical director of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers. Along the way he worked with drummers Panama Francis, Max Roach, and Louis Hayes, with saxophonist George Coleman, and San Rivers’ avant-garde Winds of Manhattan. In association with drummer Victor Lewis, Watson launched the first edition of Horizons, his acoustic quintet. He has composed original music for Robert DeNiro’s directorial debut film, A Bronx Tale.
Bobby Watson’s performance and instructional workshop are part of the July Jazz Getaway, a week-long summer jazz vacation camp at Moravian College. The Getaway is designed for non-professional adult musicians. The program offers daily jazz, big band, ensemble, and jam session playing with a faculty of professional musicians.
The July Jazz Getaway week events that are open to the public include the following:
The Moravian College Faculty Jazz Concert will be held on Sunday, June 11, at 7:00 p.m. The ensemble features Neil Wetzel on saxophone, Skip Wilkins on piano, Paul Rostock on bass, and Gary Rissmiller on drums. Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for Senior Citizens, students, and children 12 and under.
The Lehigh Valley Open Jam Session will be held on Wednesday, July 14 at 7:00 p.m. All area musicians are invited to bring their instruments and join in the action on stage. The jam session is free and open to the public.
Jazz great Bobby Watson in concert with the Moravian College Big Band and jazz ensemble on Thursday, July 15 at 8:00 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for Senior Citizens, students, and children 12 and under.
Workshop with Bobby Watson will be held on Friday, July 16 at 10:00 a.m. Bobby Watson will observe and critique July Jazz Getaway players' techniques offering suggestions and tips. The workshop provides insight into the style and techniques that made Bobby Watson a jazz great. All seats are $5.
The July Jazz Getaway Campers Concert will be held on Saturday, July 17, at 8:00 p.m. The concert features the talents of the many camp participants. Admission is free.
All events are held in Moravian College’s Foy Concert Hall at Main and Church streets in historic downtown Bethlehem. For more information on the July Jazz Getaway and concert schedule, contact the Moravian College Music Institute at (610) 861-1650.