The Berklee Concert Jazz Orchestra (BCJO), featuring trumpeter, composer, and educator Sean Jones, will perform at the 2015 Newport Jazz Festival. The 19-piece big band, which includes students from eight countries and eight U.S. states, will open the Fort Stage at 11:30 a.m. on Friday, July 31. This is the seventh consecutive year that the college has been invited to perform at the festival.
Sean Jones is chair of the Brass Department and artistic director of both the Pittsburgh and Cleveland Jazz Orchestras. He has performed and/or recorded with Joe Lovano, Chico O’Farrill, Jimmy Heath, Nancy Wilson, and Dianne Reeves, as well as with Marcus Miller, Herbie Hancock, and Wayne Shorter in the 2011 Tribute to Miles tour. He recently released his seventh recording on Mack Avenue Records, im.pro.vise: never before seen.
The BCJO is one of the most prestigious performing groups at Berklee. The ensemble features the school’s finest jazz instrumentalists playing original music written by the most accomplished jazz composers on campus. The musical expression of the ensemble represents a unique fusion of international musical styles. The group is directed by Greg Hopkins, a professor in the Jazz Composition Department, who has performed with Buddy Rich, Joe Williams, Dizzy Gillespie, Mel Torme, Frank Sinatra, and Ella Fitzgerald, among others.
Berklee has been sending student groups to perform at the Newport Jazz Festival for the past seven years. Since 2009, guitarist Roy Guzman, saxophonist Mario Castro, vocalist Ali Paris, and various ensembles from the Berklee Global Jazz Institute have represented Berklee at Newport.
For more information on the 2015 Newport Jazz Festival, visit newportjazzfest.org.