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    Wycliffe Gordon to Perform April 6 and 7

    Dr. Wycliffe A. Gordon, H ’06, will perform at two concerts presented by Performance Music at The University of Scranton. He will perform at the 14th Annual Gene Yevich Memorial Concert, sponsored by sponsored by Dave and Janet Wenzel, on Wednesday, April 6, at 7:30 p.m. He will perform with The University of Scranton Jazz Band on Thursday, April 7, 7:30 p.m. Both concerts are presented free of charge and take place in the Houlihan-McLean Center.
    March 24, 2022

    Legendary musician and composer Dr. Wycliffe Gordon, H ’06, will return to The University of Scranton for two upcoming concerts presented by Performance Music.

    On Wednesday, April 6, Gordon will perform with The University of Scranton Singers and Scranton Brass Orchestra at the 14th Annual Gene Yevich Memorial Concert. Then, the following night, Thursday, April 7, Gordon will perform a second concert with The University of Scranton Jazz Band. Both performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Houlihan-McLean Center, Mulberry Street and Jefferson Avenue.

    Admission is free, with seating on a first-come, first-seated basis. All audience members are required to wear a higher-grade mask (N95, KN95, KF94 or double masking) at all times. Please check Performance Music’s website within 24 hours of the recital for the most current information on additional required audience COVID-19 mitigation measures (e.g., masking, vaccination, distancing, etc.).

    At the concerts, Gordon and the ensembles will perform a wide variety of selections. Programming on the April 6 concert will feature Gordon as a soloist on trombone, trumpet and singing with the choir and brass orchestra, and will include music ranging from  popular selections from The Great American Songbook and spirituals to O Fortuna from Orff’s “Carmina Burana” and Va Pensiero from Verdi’s “Nabucco.”

    Programming on the April 7th concert with the Jazz Band will feature Gordon again both playing and singing, and a number of the works performed will be Gordon’s own acclaimed big band compositions, according to Performance Music Conductor and Director Cheryl Y. Boga.

    The recipient of an honorary doctorate from the University and commencement speaker in 2006, Gordon’s long friendship with Boga has also become a close relationship with the University. He’s performed and taught at the University on many occasions with almost every one of the student wind and choral ensembles, and has composed a number of new works for the university ensembles.

    “Wycliffe Gordon is my single favorite musician – he’s my musical hero,” Boga said. “He’s bigger than life. It’s like what Itzhak Perlman is to violin and Pavarotti was to voice, Wycliffe is to trombone. And I don’t know any musician in the world as generous with their time and talent. To me, he’s the closest thing we have to Louis Armstrong still with us.”

    A genuine virtuoso on the trombone, Gordon was recently named “Trombonist of the Year” for the 14th time by the Jazz Journalists Association, while the Downbeat Critics Poll has named him “Best Trombone” on six occasions.

    A former member of the Wynton Marsalis Septet and The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Gordon has received numerous other accolades, including the Louie Award for his dedication and commitment to the music of Louis Armstrong; the International Trombone Association Award; the Satchmo Award from the Sarasota Jazz Club; the Louis Armstrong Memorial Prize from the Swing Jazz Culture Foundation; Artist of the Year from the Augusta Arts Council; and the ASCAP Foundation’s Vanguard Award, among many, many others.

    Gordon’s compositions have been performed throughout the world, he has been a featured guest artist on television, film, and every other broadcast medium, is one of the nation’s most in-demand music educators, and also serves as director of Jazz Studies at Augusta University in Augusta, Georgia.

    Sponsored by former Scranton Mayor David Wenzel and his wife, Janet, the April 6th Yevich Memorial Concert is a celebration of the life of former Scranton Fire Chief Gene Yevich, Boga’s late father. Besides his career as a fireman, Yevich, who passed away in 2005, was also a highly accomplished local musician. A multi-instrumentalist known for his virtuosity on the accordion, he was a longtime member of the bands the Novelaires and the Mediterranean Sounds, who were regulars at Italian festivals in the Scranton area and New York City.

    Yevich was married for almost 50 years to the former Julia Pucher, with whom he had three children, Boga and University graduates Michael Yevich and Cynthia Yevich. His grandchildren are Joseph Boga, trumpeter with the legendary band Vince Giordano and The Nighthawks, who often performs and leads clinics and masterclasses at the University, and Magdalyn Boga, who earned a master’s degree from the University and is a member of its history faculty, and is also an operatic soprano.

    For further information on the concerts, call 570-941-7624, email music@scranton.edu or visit scranton.edu/music. For more information on Gordon, visit wycliffegordon.com.

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