Anniversary Concert at Willamette University

Alumnae of Willamette University's renowned vocal jazz group, "The Willamette Singers," return to their alma mater for a 20-year anniversary concert Friday, Sept. 27, at 8:30 p.m. in Smith Auditorium. The concert is free and open to the public.

In celebration of "The Willamette Singers" 20th year under the direction of Dr. Wallace Long, 65 alumnae of the group, representing the classes of 1984 through 2002, return to campus as part of this year's Homecoming weekend.

Long began directing the group in the fall of 1983. The singers had been known primarily as a madrigal ensemble, but responding to the jazz "explosion" in the Pacific Northwest, the singers evolved into a vocal jazz ensemble. Because Long's primary discipline is classical music, he was committed to the concept that vocal musicians could sing jazz in an authentic style, while maintaining their vocal integrity.

The International Association of Jazz Educators, the Music Educator's National Conference, and the American Choral Directors Association with invitational performances in New Orleans, Chicago, Indianapolis and Boston have honored the resultant group. Other invitational performances include Tokyo and Hawaii. This spring they will travel to New York City for an honorific performance at the American Choral Directors Association's National Convention.

Of the reunion concert, Long says, "Many remarkable musicians have performed in the group during the past 20 years. It will be wonderful to work with them again".

For more information please contact the Willamette Music Office at (503) 370-6255.