Office of Public Affairs

(315) 312-2265

March 3, 2004

CONTACT: Richard Holland, 312-2980


    OSWEGO -- An internationally renowned lineup of jazz performers and educators will present clinics and concerts for scholastic musicians during the first-ever Oswego County High School Jazz Weekend March 19 and 20 at SUNY Oswego.

    The weekend will serve as a kind of tune-up for a weeklong Jazz Institute at SUNY Oswego in July. These intensive hands-on educational opportunities are "something I've wanted to do for a long time," said Rick Holland, an assistant professor of music at the college and coordinator of the two programs. "I've always wanted an event like this that has enough diversity to please the people it could attract."
    Presenters at both the March weekend and July institute will include Holland on trumpet, big band, jazz history and combos; Grammy-nominated saxophonist Kerry Strayer on combos, improvisation and theory; Scott Gwinnel on jazz piano, musical instrument digital interface (MIDI) and combos; Carl Cafagna on saxophones, repertory orchestras, combos and improvisation; Earlie Braggs on trombone, combos and improvisation; David Rosin on rhythm section techniques, bass and combos; and Marion Felder on drums, percussion master classes and combos.

    In assembling his all-star cast, Holland wanted people who were talented players and responsive educators. "I feel like I have guys around me that can do an outstanding job," he said. "We feel like this group can offer anything a student interested in jazz would want."

    Registered student attendees to date include members of eight bands from the Fulton, Hannibal, Mexico, Oswego and Phoenix school districts, Holland said.

    Between the jazz weekend in March, the jazz institute in July and the college's established Jazz Guitar Festival in the fall, this collaborative effort can distinguish SUNY Oswego as a beacon for jazz educators, players and fans, Holland said.

    He added that cooperation and support from the college's Office of Continuing Education, which is helping to underwrite the weekend and institute, and Professor Julie Pretzat and the music department
have been instrumental in making the events come together in a short time.

    General admission to the jazz weekend costs $5, $3 for seniors and students. Activities include clinics and classes from 1 to 5:30 p.m., and a special clinical performance by the Kerry Strayer Septet on Friday, March 20, as well as a full day of performances, workshops, rehearsals and a lunch on Saturday, March 21.

    For more information on the Oswego County High School Jazz Weekend, visit

    A public performance by the Kerry Strayer Septet at 8 p.m. March 21 in Tyler Hall's Waterman Theatre will culminate the weekend of activities. Tickets for this show cost $12, $10 for seniors and students, $7 for SUNY Oswego students. A select Oswego County high school ensemble will open the concert.

    For reservations for the Saturday night Strayer concert, contact the Tyler Hall box office at 312-2141 or

- END -

News Releases Main Page | Public Affairs Main Page | SUNY Oswego Home