Michigan Tech’s jazz program, spearheaded by the renowned Don Keranen, continues to showcase the incredible talents of the university’s students through multiple engaging performances during the annual Don Keranen Memorial Jazz Festival.

Adam Meckler, the Jazz Studies Director at Michigan Tech, expressed his excitement for this year’s festival, which will feature special guest Kris Johnson, a Detroit native and former Count Basie Big Band trumpeter. Johnson will join the students on the Rozsa stage for two shows, one on Friday night and another on Saturday evening.

Meckler highlighted the hard work put in by the students to prepare for the festival, especially the Jazz Lab Band, who recently performed at the Ironwood Theatre. The festival will also include performances by the Workshop Brass Band and the R&D band, showcasing a diverse range of musical styles.

In addition to the performances, there will be a master class with Kris Johnson on Thursday at 11 a.m., providing students with the opportunity to learn from the Emmy-nominated composer and gain insight into his career in music and film scoring. Meckler hopes to see a diverse group of students, including those outside of the jazz program, attending the master class.

The festival will kick off on Friday night at 7:30 p.m. with the students showcasing their hard work and dedication on stage. On Saturday, there will be a master class for prospective Michigan Tech students, as well as middle school and high school band players, allowing them to learn a tune by ear and perform later in the day. Tickets for the festival are priced at 15 dollars as part of the pay-as-you-are-able program.

For those interested in attending the Don Keranen Memorial Jazz Festival on Friday and Saturday at the Rozsa Center on Michigan Tech’s campus, more information can be found on the event website.

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