Students, faculty, and community members have the unique opportunity to hear big band jazz that’s straight from the middle of the last century this weekend.
The Harry James Orchestra will be performing in the Searle Center at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, along with several student jazz combos while audience members can listen, eat hor d’oeuvres, and dance to the sounds of big band jazz.
“It’s going to be high energy, lots of fun, a unique event,” Music Department Chairman James Holleman said. “It’s up in Searle — this is the first time we’ve ever done anything like this.”
The featured student jazz combos, Thursday Morning and Rob Roy, will play before the performance after the doors open at 7:15 p.m.
Part of the reason that Hillsdale brings so many groups to campus is for the jazz musicians who play on campus: Director of Jazz Ensembles and trumpet teacher Chris McCourry said the Howard Department of Music brings so many excellent musicians to help musical students develop and strive for excellence.
“A person can really only grow if they’re surrounded by people better than them,” McCourry said.
Hearing professional musicians inspires music students to try harder, reinforcing what professors encourage them to do every day and making them work harder at their instrument, McCourry said.
The Searle Center will have tables and audience seating as well as a dance floor on the side of the stage.
Tickets are needed for entrance and are available for free by contacting the Sage Box Office, but they are limited.