By GWEN SISSON
An internationally-acclaimed jazz musician will share the stage this week with the Starkville-Mississippi State University Symphony orchestra.
Jazz musician Wycliffe Gordon will perform in Starkville as part of the Criss Christmas Concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Bettersworth Auditorium of Lee Hall on the MSU campus.
Robert Phillips, president of the Starkville-MSU Symphony Association said a concert featuring a great jazz musician is unusual for the Starkville Symphony.
“We have seldom presented pops concerts,” Phillips said. “Jazz, however, is an important part of American culture and increasingly appears in what we usually think of as classical composition.”
Phillips said the Symphony Association expects this concert to be outstanding.
“It will include the some of the brass, woodwind, and percussion players from the symphony,” Phillips said. “We are very lucky to have someone of Wycliffe Gordon’s talents and accomplishments as our guest soloist.”
Dr. Michael Brown, conductor of the Starkville/MSU Symphony Orchestra, said Gordon is such an incredibly talented musician, this will be a special concert for the Starkville community.
“Wycliffe Gordon is one of the most significant jazz musicians on the international scene today,” Brown said. “It will be a great opportunity for Starkville to have a musician of his caliber come for a visit.”
Gordon enjoys an international career as a performer, conductor, composer, arranger, and educator, receiving high praise from audiences and critics alike. In addition to a thriving solo career, he tours regularly leading the Wycliffe Gordon Quartet, headlining at legendary jazz venues throughout the world. Gordon is a former veteran member of the Wynton Marsalis Septet, Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra and has been a featured guest artist on Billy Taylor’s “Jazz at the Kennedy Center” Series.
For more information about the Criss Christmas Concert, go to http://www.starkvillemsusymphony.org .