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Wells School of Music

Jazz Festival

Contact Wells School of Music  

Wells School of Music

Swope Music Building
817 S. High Street
West Chester, PA 19383

Wells School of Music
Phone: 610-436-2739
Fax: 610-436-2873

Staff Contact Information


March 20 - 23, 2019

All events take place in Madeleine Wing Adler Theatre, located in Swope Music Building and Performing Arts Center. Click to access campus map.

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MINAS featuring Orlando Haddad and Patricia King

MARCH 20, 2019 | 12:00PM

MINAS takes Brazilian and American roots to create a sound that is fresh and innovative, from ballads tinged with melancholic traits of Blues and Choro, to Folk coasting on the subtle coolness of a Bossa Nova pulse, to upbeat Sambas elaborated with instrumental jazz improvisation, scat singing and whimsical whistling. With recordings of original music and a collection of over 100 songs, Orlando and Patricia’s compositions have been compared to classics by Cole Porter and Antonio Carlos Jobim. Capturing the essence of great songwriting with memorable melodies, inventive harmonies, and poetic lyrics, the music of Minas is engaging and timeless.

Featuring core-members Orlando Haddad and Patricia King, internationally acclaimed Minas is one of the most established Brazilian Jazz musical groups in the US today. With 4 decades experience performing and recording, the music of Minas creates an intimate and unforgettable musical tapestry that transports and inspires listeners. Indicated for 4 Grammy awards for their 2015 CD release Symphony in Bossa, Minas has performed in major national venues such as Lincoln Center in New York, Kennedy Center in Washington DC, and the Kimmel and Mann Centers in Philadelphia.


WCU Faculty Jazz Group

WCU Faculty Jazz Group

MARCH 20, 2019 | 8:00PM

The Faculty Jazz Group features both the full-time and adjunct jazz faculty at West Chester University. Special guests include instructors from the Summer Jazz Camp. Everyone contributes a chart to this great once a year concert. This year's group features:

Dan Cherry - Trombone

Dan joined the WCU faculty in 2005. He received his Bachelor of Music degree in Trombone and Voice Performance from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, where he studied trombone with Joel Pugh and Scott Moore and voice with William Florescu. He went on to receive both his Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in Trombone from the University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory of Music. While at CCM, he studied trombone with Tony Chipurn and David Vining and conducting with Terrence Milligan. In addition to his classical music endeavors, Dan is also an advocate and performer of jazz - America's music. From his early days as a high school student playing lead trombone in Pennsylvania's All-State Jazz Ensemble to his current collaborations with WCU jazz faculty in combo settings, jazz has remained an important part of Dan's musical life.

David Cullen - Guitar

David Cullen is a Grammy Award Winning guitarist whose playing has been hailed by the New York Times as "Jazz, Folk, Blues Superstructures". He has performed throughout the United States for Performing Arts Series, Jazz Festivals and Classical Guitar Societies. He has performed in a dazzling wide range of musical styles including Jazz, Classical and World music. He has performed with Will Ackerman, Samite of Uganda and the Jaco Big Band.

Chris Hanning - Drumset

Dr. Chris Hanning is a Professor of Percussion at West Chester University, a recording artist for NFL Films, and performs with the Peter Paulsen Quintet, the Bach Festival Orchestra of Bethlehem, and Philadelphia's premier contemporary music ensemble Relâche. His performing has taken him throughout Europe and the United States with engagements at such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, and Royal Albert Hall in London. In 2006 he released Island Grooves, an instructional drum set DVD that received a 4 1/2 out of 5 star rating from Modern Drummer magazine. Chris has recorded several CD's with Relâche, the Bach Choir of Bethlehem, David Liebman and the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet, and a new release with the Peter Paulsen Quintet titled Goes Without Saying. Chris performed on numerous recordings for NFL Films over the past twelve years including several Emmy Award Winning projects. You can hear Chris every year when the Lombardi Trophy music is played during the Super Bowl. He is currently co-writing music with long time NFL Films composer and producer Tom Hedden. You can check out some of his music at firstcom music. Chris is an artist/clinician for Vic Firth, Pearl/Adams, Remo, Zildjian, and Panyard and has presented clinics at Universities, conventions, and percussion festivals across the United States and abroad. Chris also chairs the Percussive Arts Society Contest and Audition Procedure Committee and serves on the PAS Board of Directors.

Marc Jacoby - Vibraphone

Dr. Marc Jacoby is an Associate Professor of Music at West Chester University of Pennsylvania where he serves as Jazz Studies Coordinator and teaches in the Applied Music and Music Education programs. He currently directs the Criterions Big Band and Latin Jazz Ensemble. Before joining the faculty at WCU, Dr. Jacoby was on the faculty of the VanderCook College of Music in Chicago, IL. While in Chicago, he played with many of the regions salsa and latin-jazz groups including the Grammy nominated Orquesta 911 mambo big band. He also co-founded the Orquesta Dos Claves, a latin-jazz big band and workshop for Chicago area youth. The ensemble performed at the Chicago Jazz Festival, Illinois Music Educator's Association Conference, Hot House's Jazz en Clave Festival, Chicago Historical Society, Harold Washington Cultural Center, and school jazz festivals around the region.

Dr. Jacoby had a 20-year career in marching music instructing and arranging pit percussion music for many of the top Drum and Bugle Corps including the 1988 DCI Champions Madison Scouts, Blue Devils, Crossmen, Cadets, and Glassmen. Mark Wessels Publications recently released an audio CD of his arrangements for percussion ensemble that accompany the book, A Fresh Approach to Mallet Percussion.

Dr. Jacoby is an Apple Authorized Trainer, an artist/clinician for the Yamaha Corporation and Vic Firth, Inc., a Sibelius Ambassador/Trainer and is on the Educational Advisory Committee for Latin Percussion, Inc. He has been an active performer and clinician and has presented sessions on jazz education and technology at the Mid-West Band and Orchestra Clinic, Music Educator's National Conference, International Association of Jazz Educators, Association for Technology in Music Instruction, TI:ME national and regional conferences, Winter Guard International, Drum Corps International, and many state teachers conventions.

Terry Klinefelter - Piano

Heralded by the Philadelphia Inquirer as "on the cosmic cusp where Mozart might mingle with Mingus", pianist Terry Klinefelter has performed in a wide variety of settings in both the classical and jazz fields. Appearances include the Philadelphia Orchestra Chamber Music Series, Philadelphia Fringe Festival, Endless Mountain Music Festival, Chadds Ford Winery Jazz Festival, Jazz at the Springs and the Arcady Festival in Bar Harbor, Maine. Dr. Klinefelter has been pianist for the Pennsylvania Ballet, and a soloist with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra (where she has also served as keyboardist for many years), the Allegro Society, Bux-mont Chamber Orchestra, and recently with the WCU Symphony Orchestra at the Kimmel Center. She has performed in Mexico, Italy (Rome Festival Orchestra), and collaborated with such diverse artists as renowned early music soprano Julianne Baird (tours with The Jane Austen Songbook), violist Emanuel Vardi, Philadelphia Orchestra violinist Kim Fisher and jazz pianist George Shearing (opening of Bally's Grand, Atlantic City). Past awards include the PMTA Collegiate Artist Award as well as prizes in the Wilmington JCC Young Musicians Contest and a recent teaching grant from the Main Line Music Teachers Association. As a jazz musician, Dr. Klinefelter also performs regularly in the area with many of Philadelphia's finest musicians, and has appeared on several recent recordings (Anne Sciolla's Diva-Free Zone and Paul Klinefelter's Night Mood). Her debut jazz trio CD, Simple Gifts, was praised for its "impressive sonority". Dr. Klinefelter was recently invited to create jazz settings for several poems by renowned poet Dana Gioia for WCU's Poetry Salon this fall, in collaboration with soprano Anne Sciolla.

Dr. Klinefelter began teaching at WCU in 1996, and became a permanent faculty member in 2001. Her principal teacher was Benjamin Whitten; she has also worked with Ena Bronstein, Marilyn Neeley, Harvey Wedeen and Lambert Orkis, and recently studied Taubman technique with Robert Durso. She is a member of Pi Kappa Lambda, a national music honor society, and an active member of the Music Teachers National Association. A longtime yoga practitioner, Dr. Klinefelter recently became a Registered Yoga Teacher and has enjoyed helping her students to experience reduced performance anxiety with this ancient practice. Dr. Klinefelter's students have included winners of the WCU Concerto Competition as well as the Jacobs Steinway Award and other scholarships. Many of her students have gone on to pursue careers as performers and educators. As a teacher in WCU's Community Music School, Dr. Klinefelter's students have included prizewinners in the Keystone Competition as well as several winners of the "Best Soloist" award in area jazz festivals.

Peter Paulsen - Bass

Mr. Paulsen's first CD release, Peter Paulsen Quintet "Three-Stranded Cord", on R&L Records, received international press and national airplay, as well as the second Peter Paulsen Trio release, "Tri-cycle". He has also recorded with the MPH Trio, "Curves", on GPC Recordings, and the Jeff Baumeister Quartet, "Useful Music", on Wahbo Records. His most recent release, Peter Paulsen "Change of Scenery" Sextet also on Wahbo Records, has gained international recognition in both radio and printed media, with an emphasis on a confident and original compositional voice.

Mr. Paulsen is very committed to the education of young, up-coming musicians and has participated in master classes with Francois Rabbath, Hal Robinson, Mark Morton, and Donald Palma and as clinician with Jimmy Knepper, George Young, Clark Terry, Dennis DiBlasio, Valery Ponamerov, Dave Liebman, Gunnar Mossblad and Ed Soph. He is a member of the International Society of Bassists and an active composer of works for his instrument, receiving three prestigious Pennsylvania Council on the Arts composition grants and a composer residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Alberta, Canada. The PEW Charitable Trust recognized Peter Paulsen with a 2007 PEW Fellowship in composition and he can be seen in the acclaimed documentary, "12 Short Films of the 2007 PEW Fellows." Mr. Paulsen and his wife, mezzo-soprano Charlotte Paulsen continue to commission, premier, and record many new works for the unusual combination of double bass and voice.

Jonathan Ragonese - Saxophones

Jonathan Ragonese, composer-arranger-saxophonist, is a native of New Cumberland, Pennsylvania. He moved to New York City in 2007 to attend the Manhattan School of Music, he has lived and worked there since. As a saxophonist he has performed and recorded with a wide array of musicians including Steve Wilson, David Liebman, the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, Tim Warfield, Tin Can Buddha and Steve Rudolph. As a composer his works have been commissioned and premiered by saxophonist Steve Wilson, Jazz @ Lincoln Center, The Museum of Modern Art, the Vermont Mozart Festival Orchestra, the Harrisburg Symphony, and the The Righteous Girls, Bucknell University, West Chester University and the Harrisburg Youth Symphony. In 2014 Ragonese premiered his ‘Not-this’ for two saxophones, at Carnegie Hall. Jonathan is an active educator, with lectures, writings, and the development of Music Before Words, a music program for infants with educator Renee Bock. His first recording, Ardent Marigolds, was released in 2013, a duo with musical father Steve Rudolph. 2017 brings two new releases, many premieres.

John Swana - Valve Trombone/EWI

John was born in Norristown, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, and began studying trumpet at the age of 11. He was drawn to jazz at the age of 17 after hearing Dizzy Gillespie, and the interest developed into a passion while he was in collage, where he began transcribing the solos of Freddie Hubbard, Clifford Brown, Miles Davis, and Tom Harrell. Swana has performed and/or toured with the Mingus Big Band, and the Dave Holland Big Band, and has also played with well known jazz names such as Don Patterson, Shirley Scott, Mickey Roker, Stanley Turrentine, Harold Mabern, Cecil Payne, Johnny Coles, Ralph Peterson, Charles Fambrough, Bobby Watson, Craig Handy, Chris Potter, Stephen Scott, Tim Warfield, Eric Alexander, Sam Newsome, Brad Mehldau,Vincent Herring, Uri Caine, Tim Armacost, Peter Leitch, Peter Bernstein, Mark Turner, Jon Gordon, Donny McCaslin, Ravi Coltrane, Ralph Bowen, Greg Hutchinson, Ari Hoenig, Seamus Blake, and Robin Eubanks. He has also been heard with Freddie Hubbard, Phil Woods, Ronnie Cuber, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Clark Terry, Frank Foster, John Faddis, Slide Hampton, J.J. Johnson, Bob Minzer, and Charlie Persip.

Paul Jost - Vocalist

Paul Jost is an eclectic artist. A vocalist, drummer, arranger and composer who performs regularly in New York, Philadelphia and New Jersey along with recent tours in South Korea, Ireland and Germany. His solo CD Breaking Through (Dot Time Records) continues to receive raves worldwide. One of his originals, "Book Faded Brown," has been recorded by The Band, Rick Danko and Carl Perkins. Jost's newest album in the works, Born to Run Reimagined, was recorded live at The Bitter End this fall with Jim Ridl, John Swana, Donald Edwards, Chico Huff, Tony Miceli and mixed by Toby Scott. Paul can be heard on SiriusXM Radio along with The Jost Project, Can't Find My Way Home (Dot Time Records) performing classic rock in a jazz format.


Tony Miceli and Diane Monroe

Tony Miceli and Diane Monroe

MARCH 21, 2019 | 12:00PM

Covering the musical spectrum - jazz, classical, standards, and spiritual.

Tony Miceli - Vibraphone

Internationally renowned vibraphonist Tony Miceli has been performing steadily on the jazz scene since 1980. In All About Jazz, Vic Schermer describes him as ... "a vibraphonist of astonishing virtuosity, musical resilience, and inventiveness. His vibes playing is nothing short of phenomenal."

Tony plays with the highest caliber musicians. As a group leader, sideman, and recording artist, he has performed with numerous top musicians including David Liebman, Jimmy Bruno, Ken Peplowski, John Blake, Diane Monroe, John Swana, Joe Magnarelli, Steve Slagle, Larry McKenna, and many others. He is the proud originator of The Jōst Project, a band of jazz artists who reach new generations for jazz by playing the music they recognize -- classic rock. He is also proud to play with the Irish musicians who bring back the music of the Modern Jazz Quartet. Playing vibe improvisations with singer Joanna Pascal, they performed in a concert called "Mozart Reloaded" at Philadelphia's prestigious Kimmel Center, Joanna Pascal's rendition of a Mozart opera aria. With crossover violinist, Diane Monroe, he is now working on a project using jazz, folk, and classical influences.

He is a performer, educator and innovator, not just as a musician, but also as the creator of, his vibraphone online school of music with over 3,000 members. Traveling around the world, he has recently performed in such countries as Spain, Ireland, South Korea, Australia, Canada, Belgium and Patagonia. Based in Philadelphia, he performs and leads vibraphone workshops throughout the USA including Colorado, North Dakota, Delaware, Idaho, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Diane Monroe - Violin

Diane Monroe is more than simply a fine performer. She is a violinist whose versatility and expressive artistry consistently bring audiences to their feet. Her visibility as a jazz artist began with her long-standing membership as first violinist of the Uptown String Quartet (with Lesa Terry, Maxine Roach and Eileen Folson) and the Max Roach Double Quartet. With those ensembles, she performed with Cecil Bridgewater, Trumpeter; Odean Pope, Saxophonist and Tyrone Brown, bassist, and has recorded on the Soul Note, Philips/Polygram, and Mesa/Bluemoon labels.

In addition to her contributions as a side-person, Monroe has been leading her own ensembles for more than 15 years. The Diane Monroe Quartet appeared on the Kennedy Center's Women in Jazz Festival in 2012 and has performed at many other venues. She has developed a program for her sextet – "What Is This Thing Called Freedom" – that features vocalist Paul Jost and her longtime musical partner, vibraphonist Tony Miceli. She and Miceli released their debut recording, Alone Together (Dreambox Media), in August 2014. All About Jazz sums up the recording: "Monroe and Miceli are adept and resilient musicians of the highest caliber, so they are able to weave their combined sounds into many expressive variations that create "tone poems" and tell stories."

Monroe is in demand as an educator, panel specialist and leader of jazz improv workshops, rhythm clinics and master classes. The Verbier Festival Switzerland 2000, highlighted her summer as soloist/conductor of the Fiddlefest Jazz String Orchestra. During this festival, Monroe conducted the string orchestra students in a spontaneous collaboration with the violinist Kennedy, in a blues medley. In 2007, Monroe conducted the jazz string section for the Saxophonist James Carter with his quartet, in a presentation at the Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall entitled, "Gardenia's for Lady Day." At last season's ASTA conference, she chaired a panel, "Improvised music in the classroom," which included distinguished composer/pedagogue, David Baker.


Adam Larson Quartet image

Adam Larson Quartet

MARCH 21, 2019 | 8:00PM

Comprised of bandleader and saxophonist Adam Larson, pianist Steven Feifke, bassist Martin Nevin and drummer Jason Burger, the Adam Larson Quartet formed in 2008 as a result of the vibrant jazz scene in New York, and has been performing consistently ever since. Larson has led the group at venues in New York City such as The Jazz Gallery, The Blue Note, Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, The Kitano, Smalls and several others across the Tri-State area, as well as internationally. An equal opportunist bandleader, Larson’s quartet draws upon the improvisational prowess and compositional skill of each band member. Performing primarily original music as well as select arrangements from composers around the world, the band finds influence from musicians as varied as John Coltrane, Bach, The Beatles, Maurice Ravel, and Snoop Dogg among others, all of whom contribute to the Quartet’s unique sound.


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Master Class with Xiomara Laugart and Axel Tosca Laugart

MARCH 22, 2019 | 12:00PM

Xiomara Laugart

Originally from the Guantanamo province of Cuba, Xiomara Laugart began her career at the age of 15, performing several different expressions of traditional and contemporary Cuban music. During the 1980s, she entered the Adolfo Guzman Contest for Cuban music where she was granted the highest award. She went on to win other international awards at Poland’s Sopot Festival in 1985, and at Germany’s Dresden Festival in 1986. After having recorded self-titled albums in Cuba, she moved to Rome and later to New York.

Soon, Xiomara was invited to be the guest singer on two jazz albums, Deep Rumba by Kip Hanrahan and Latin Lullaby by Ellipsis Art, and on Jacky Terrason's new album What It Is released in April of 1999 by Blue Note Records. She also was featured in the first single from the recent album by Fun Loving Criminals released worldwide in 2001. Laugart's monthly showcases at New York City's famed underground Zinc Bar have been called legendary.

Xiomara is currently a vocalist in Yerba Buena, whose first album President Alien was nominated for a Grammy. The songs from this first album have been used in Pepsi commercials, and in movies, such as Havana Nights. Yerba Buena’s second album Island Life, a brilliant mix of rhythms to which Xiomara adds her African and Caribbean legacy, was released in 2005.

Axel Tosca Laugart

Cuban born Axel Tosca Laugart is one of the most dynamic young pianists on the scene.

Laugart's family influenced his musical interests at an early age. Both his father and stepfather were musicians and his father's guitar playing sparked an early interest in the instrument. He began playing guitar around the age of four and piano at the age of seven, accompanying his parents. Laugart's mother, Xiomara Laugart, is a world-famous singer, whom he still performs with today.

Laugart benefitted from a wide range of musical experiences growing up in Cuba. Dennis & Swing was a group that Laugart credits for "giving me the real timba groove." Laugart also played with the Afro Cuban All Stars, Teresa Garcia Caturla, Sexteto Sendito, Jose Miguel Crego (known as “El Greco”), and a Latin Jazz group called the Bobby Carcases Group, where Laugart says "I learned a lot about the language of music."

Laugart was also part of the Hip-Hop scene in Cuba and had the opportunity to play with The Roots while they were in Cuba. He has also worked in the studio with Cuban conductor Miguel Ceruto.

Amadito Valdez, the great timbalero with the Buena Vista Social Club, was a musical mentor and an important part of Laugart's decision to come to the United States in July of 2005. His arrival came with the opportunity to perform with “Havana Night” in Las Vegas for two years.

Now based in New York, Laugart continues to grow musically. Of his future, he says "my goal is to just keep upgrading my talent and my soul. I love the world."


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Xiomara Laugart and Axel Tosca Laugart with Criterions Jazz Ensemble

MARCH 22, 2019 | 7:30PM

Those who have entered Cuba through Jose Marti International Airport in Havana will know that upon arrival, they are greeted by beautiful video images of Old Havana on TV screens and the sultry voice of XIOMARA LAUGART singing “Hoy mi Habana”. And it is no coincidence because Xiomara “La Negra” Laugart is “The Voice of Cuba”. She has been representing her country and her people, performing at venues around the globe for over 30 years and with the greatest of international talents. She is a living legend in her native Cuba where she has recorded more than 15 albums. Xiomara began to sing at the age of 15. From the moment she entered the “Adolfo Guzmán” Contest for Cuban music in 1980–winning the highest award–she has become one of the most brilliant representatives of Cuban song, taking home many international awards (1980, Sochi Russia; Sopot Festival 1985, Poland; Dresden Festival 1986, Germany, and others). In the late 1990s, Xiomara relocated to the United States, and in 2003 became a founding member of the Grammy-nominated fusion band Yerba Buena. She appears on numerous records, including “Deep Rumba” by Kip Hanrahan, “Latin Lullaby” by Ellipsis Art, and Jacky Terrason’s “What it is.” From 2007 – 2008, Xiomara performed the title role in Celia, based on the life of Celia Cruz, at New World Stages on Broadway. She has performed internationally, and recorded and performed alongside Celia Cruz, Tito Puente, Roy Hargrove, Femi Kuti, D’Angelo, Erykah Badu, Busta Rhymes and many others. She appears in the film Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights and in the German/Cuban film Paraíso Bajo las Estrellas. Xiomara has recorded and released three original records, Xiomara (2006), La Voz (2010) and Tears and Rumba, which is due out this summer.

Pianist AXEL TOSCA LAUGART, son of world-famous Cuban musicians Alberto Tosca and Xiomara Laugart, was born in Havana, Cuba in 1985. As a young musician in Cuba, Axel performed and ecorded with many renowned musicians, including the great Cuban conductor Miguel Ceruto, Teresa “Tete” Garcia Caturla of the Afro-Cuban All Stars, Sexteto Sendito, and Bobby Carcases, as well as the Roots on their Cuba tour. In 2005, Axel moved to Las Vegas, where he spent two years performing with “Havana Night.” In 2009, he received a scholarship to finish his bachelor’s degree at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, and relocated permanently to NYC. In New York, he plays with the legendary Pedrito Martinez Group, Gerardo Contino & Los Habaneros and his original ensemble, (U)nity, a collaboration with Cuban-American drummer Amaury Acosta. Axel has produced two records for his mother, Xiomara Laugart, and has performed internationally at her side. He has worked with many celebrated musicians and producers, including George Clinton and Parliment Funkadelic, Michael Moog, Gary Haus, Jeff “Tain” Watts, James Genus, Ron Blake, Roy Hargrove, Luques Curtis, Giovani Hidalgo, Luis Salinas, Candido Camero, and Pablo Milanes. He credits his teachers Miriam Valdez (sister of the famous Cuban piano player and virtuoso Chucho Valdez) and Rosa Maria Tolon, as well as Amadito Valdez, the famous timbalero of the Buena Vista Social Club, with putting him on this path.


High School Jazz Festival

High School Jazz Festival

MARCH 23, 2019 | 10:00AM-6:00PM

Fourteen of the finest high school jazz ensembles from around the region will be performing and working with the WCU faculty at this day-long festival. These young musicians demonstrate that the future of jazz is in good hands.


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