By Lacy Sutton / Staff Writer
Hutchinson Community College is home to multiple jazz ensembles. Two of these groups will be showcased in their kickoff concert Friday at 7:30 p.m. in Stringer Fine Arts Center.
The performance will feature the HutchCC Concert Jazz Band under the direction of Nick Schroeder, and Badinage, HutchCC’s top vocal jazz ensemble, under the direction of Neal Allsup.
The upcoming concert is unique from previous September concerts as they will be featuring guest saxophonist, Adam Larson.
Originally from Illinois, Adam moved to New York where he eventually became one of the top saxophonists in the state. Adam has moved back to the Midwest and will be featured in a few vocal jazz songs, as well as four out of the six Concert Jazz Band’s songs during Friday’s concert.
“This is really the finest jazz program in Kansas, especially when you consider it’s a community college,” Schroeder said.
Badinage has been nationally recognized for its talent, receiving multiple DownBeat Student Music Awards. The DownBeat Student Music Award was established in 1976 and is considered to be the most prestigious award in jazz education.
Badinage has been selected to perform at Carnegie Hall on numerous occasions and has participated in many State of Kansas Music Conventions.
The music these groups perform is some of the most challenging music they will perform in their lives. The directors push them to be the best musicians they can be, and it shows at each of their performances.
Ryan Roderick, a freshman at HutchCC, is a first-year Badinage member. Roderick is excited about their first performance and says he’s “mostly looking forward to showing everyone how hard we’ve worked and all of our new songs.”
“It’s been awesome to be able to kind of form a family with these people,” Roderick said.
The concert will be held in the B.J. Warner Recital Hall located on the HutchCC main campus. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, and $5 for students. HutchCC students and faculty get in free with their school ID.
There will be nine more performances for the groups throughout the rest of the year.
“It’s really high-quality entertainment for very cheap,” Schroeder said.