Tag Archives: piano

Chris Botti and Company Bring a Musical Explosion

The grammy award-winning trumpeter shows Champaign-Urbana his talents

Written by Edward Huang

Botti with his band of young talents performing a lively jazz mashup

On a calm Saturday night, the guests of Krannert Center for Performing Arts waited eagerly for the appearance of Chris Botti, the renowned trumpeter, to make his way onto the stage. I watched as he made his entrance, but I was caught off by the number of other musicians that he brought along with him. As an appreciator of all music styles, I was excited to see what they had in store.

Chris Botti takes a break to allow his band to show off their talents

I would have to say that my favorite part of the performance was when the band played with Anastasiia Mazurok, the violinist. I had always thought of trumpets, drums, and basses to be separate from more classical instruments like the violin. If someone told me that they would sound good together, I would have been very skeptical. However, I was delighted to find that the band performing with a violin was not only good, it was spectacular. The stringed instrument blended in so well with the soft background of the accompaniment, creating a song that was nothing short of beautiful.

The bassist takes center stage, showing his musical versatility with the electric guitar

I thought that Chris Botti’s trumpet playing proved that he deserved the recognition he got. I had seen a few brass performances before, but nothing was as dominant as I saw from him. His playing demanded the attention of everyone in the room, fluctuating between powerful riffs and soft, subtle melodies. The band that he chose complimented him very well–each instrument with a distinct style but always coming together in a soulful symphony. Towards the second half of the show, he brought in a saxophone player as well as a vocalist. I was absolutely amazed by the amount of musical diversity they put together. Even with these additions, the music blended in so well, almost like a smooth mixture of “chocolate jazz”.

When I left Krannert that night, I looked up at the sky and said to myself: “Man, I love music so much.” This performance really revitalized my appreciation for the arts. I hope that I can see something like that again soon.

Chris Botti – The Trumpet Master!

Wai Chuen Chan

Chris Botti performed a series of Jazz with his band at Night in Krannert Center.

On September 14, Chris Botti featuring Lee Pearson, Reggie Hamilton, Leonardo Amuedo, Holger Marjamaa, Andy Snitzer, Anastasiia Mazurok, Sy Smith, and Rafael Moras, performed a series of Jazz music including Botti’s album with diverse musical instruments at Tryon Festival Theatre in Krannert Center.

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Buddy Guy Spurs The Crowd at Krannert

Urbana-Champaign gets a taste of the legendary blues icon

Written by Edward Huang

A projection against the wall at the beginning of the concert

On September 7th, fans of old and new gathered at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts to watch Buddy Guy perform. Their energy filled the concert venue long before he appeared on stage. Whether they were addicted to his vibe or simply respecting his art, the fans could not wait for him arrive.

The audience eagerly awaits for Buddy Guy to arrive on stage

I would not say that I’m a big fan of the blues, but I do think that there are many unique musical aspects that can only be incorporated into blues music. Before arriving at Krannert, I had never heard of Buddy Guy. Perhaps it was the generational divide, or simply just my own ignorance, but I was unsure of what to expect. I figured that I would at least enjoy the music, because I play the guitar myself. I certainly did not expect to witness the raw power and skill of Buddy Guy, which I know now is nothing short of legendary. He didn’t just play the blues–he lived and breathed it. It was evident in the way that the audience jumped onto their feet the moment he walked into their view.

He began the show with a series of his own songs. There would always be members of the audience singing along with him. Immediately, I could feel that this concert was different from any other concert I’d attended before. Buddy guy treated his fans not like spectators, but like old friends. As if they had been with him his whole life, watching him grow and develop into the blues staple that he is today. Even though I had never heard of him before, that night, I felt like I’d known him for my whole life. He interacted constantly with the audience. There were many songs where he encouraged the audience to sing with him. It was a musical conversation. At some point during the performance, he lifted the house lights, taking the spotlight away from himself and putting it onto his fans. The lady sitting next to me told me that he loved to walk among his audience. I thought it was such a humble gesture, especially coming from such a renowned figure.

At the end of the night, I felt that the concert was time well spent. I can now confidently say that I love the blues. Buddy Guy sparked a new kind of passion within me. He showed me how to appreciate art of music rather than just the technical parts. I know I will listen to his music for the rest of my life.

An eventful and enjoyable night at the Buddy Guy concert

Celebrating Debuting Musicians

Written by Lesly Marroquin

On Sunday, Krannert Performing Art Center had an event as part of their
50th-Anniversary Celebration. This event debuted a student from the school of Music student, Wilson Poffenberger. He was selected for this recital performance through an audition. All the pieces were accompanied by pianist Casey Gene Dierlam.

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Saxophonist: Wilson Poffenberger

By: Jeffery Berry

The Lead act of Today’s Performance

Today’s performance was very soothing and peaceful. It was a good way to celebrate Krannert’s 50th anniversary. It was amazing to see and listen to the piano and saxophonist play together. The dynamics and pace of the songs were composed with great difficulty, but the preparedness of these performers made it seem extremely easy.

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Emotions through Strings

An amazing violin performance by Itzhak Perlman.

Written by Bill Xun

Taken by Bill Xun

This week the class went to see the great violinist Itzhak Perlman and pianist Rohan De Silva last Saturday night in Foellinger Great Hall at the Krannert Center. Some of my friends who knew him told me that he was arguably one of the best violinists in the world, and after listening to him play I would definitely have to agree.

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The Legendary Violin Show

Written By Tim Gao

Photo by Tim Gao

It was truly an honor to attend the performance of Itzhak Perlman. He was famous not only for his remarkable violin performance and contribution to the classical violin performing but also for his humor and his charm. Continue reading