Fairfield University's Jazz Ensemble will present its Spring Jazz Concert, with special guest cornetist Kirk Knuffke, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 25, in the school's Gonzaga Auditorium, 1073 N. Benson Road.
Originally from Colorado, Knuffke has lived in New York City since 2005. He is a largely self-taught musician who has also studied improvisation with great jazz artists, among them Ornette Coleman, Art Lande and Ron Miles.
He leads several of his own groups, including the Kirk Knuffke Quartet and Trio, which play at venues across New York City. He is also a member of the Matt Wilson Quartet, touring the United States, performing and teaching.
The ensemble is directed by Brian Torff, the university's director of jazz and popular music, with student leader Jenna Taylor. Its members include Chris Finelli on trumpet; Michael Mauro, Amanda Ocasio and Alexis Ellis on saxophones; Jenna Taylor on flute; guest Arthur Ashman on trombone; Robby Schwartz on piano; John Domenico and Jamie Debicella on guitar; Torff on bass; and Chuck DeFilippo and DJ Horstmann on drums.
The evening's program includes "Take Five," in honor of Dave Brubeck; "Caravan," by Duke Ellington, performed in a ska style; "Perdido," by Juan Tizol; "St. Thomas," by Sonny Rollins; "Hot 'Lanta," by the Allman Brothers; and "My Thunder" and "North Side Shuffle," two original compositions by Torff.
Also performing will be the Fairfield University Gospel Choir, directed by Maurice Wiley.
Tickets are $5 and will be available at the door.
For more information, call 203-254-4010 or visit www.quickcenter.com.