The Dizzy Gillespie All Stars to Headline Annual Lakeland Jazz Festival

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Ernie Krivda
  • Ernie Krivda
The annual Lakeland Jazz Festival, which takes place from March 17 to 19 at the college's Dr. Wayne L. Rodehorst Performing Arts Center (Building D), offers a celebration of jazz music with performers ranging from up-and-coming students and new artists to more established veterans of the jazz scene.

Since its inception, the festival has aimed to “instill the excitement and magic of jazz education to the younger generation of musicians.” Over the years, tens of thousands of middle and high school musicians from all over Ohio have participated in the festival in addition to famous jazz musicians from around the country.

This year, the festival will honor retired Lakeland Community College professor and music department chair Charles M. Frank, who started the festival 45 years ago.

At 8 p.m. on Friday, March 17, the Ernie Krivda Quartet will perform both originals and jazz standards. The locally based Krivda has had international success as a recording artist and released over a dozen albums in his long career.



The Dizzy Gillespie All Stars, which features five established jazz veterans, including two who have played extensively with Gillespie himself, serve as headliners. They'll lead a clinic at 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 18, and then perform a concert at 8 that night. According to the festival press release, “The program material is based on Dizzy's music of the '40s and '50s." The concert will include tunes such as “A Night In Tunisia,” "Anthropology," "BeBop," “Birks Works,” “Blue ‘N’ Boogie,” “Con Alma,” “Dizzy Atmosphere,” “Groovin’ High,” “Hot House,” “Oop-Pop-Sh’-Bam,” “Ow,” “Salt Peanuts” and many others.

At 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 19, the Lakeland Civic Jazz Orchestra and the Kent State Jazz Orchestra will perform separate concerts.

In addition to the concerts that are open to the public, the festival will also feature performances by middle and high school jazz ensembles from around Ohio.

Check the website for a complete schedule and details regarding ticket prices.

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