Birch Creek Music Performance Center Associates will be holding their annual fundraiser on Saturday, October 14, 2017 in Juniper Hall. The evening begins with a reception at 5:30pm, which includes hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar followed by the concert at 7:00pm. Tickets are by reservation only and are $60 per person for the reception and concert.
Jazz Session Faculty members Katie Ernst, vocalist and bassist, and Michael Stryker, pianist, along with tenor sax player, Dustin Laurenzi, will celebrate the centennial year of Ella Fitzgerald as we pay tribute to “The First Lady of Swing.” These stellar musicians will perform songs from the famous, Grammy Award Winning album, Ella in Berlin from 1960, including Our Love is Here to Stay, How High the Moon and Mack the Knife.
Katie Ernst has been described by the Chicago Tribune as “a versatile young bassist who plays in far-flung bands and sings with uncommon delicacy and authenticity.” As both a bassist and vocalist, Katie has performed at the Chicago Jazz Festival, the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Hyde Park Jazz Festival, and Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival, among others. The Chicago Reader identified her as “one of the brightest lights on Chicago’s jazz scene, and she isn’t close to hitting her creative ceiling.” Katie holds a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies & Contemporary Media and a Bachelor of Musical Arts from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. She coordinates the Jazz Links Student Council program for high school musicians at the Jazz Institute of Chicago, serves as Jazz Ensemble Director and Lecturer of Jazz Bass at Wheaton College in Wheaton, IL and teaches at the Jazz I Summer Session at Birch Creek Music Performance Center.
Michael Stryker is Professor of Jazz Piano in the School of Music at Western Illinois University. He directs big bands and coaches jazz combos, teaches Applied Jazz Piano, Class Jazz Piano, Jazz Fundamentals, Jazz History, both Undergraduate and Graduate level Improvisation, and is a member of the Dale Hopper Faculty Jazz Sextet. He is also on the faculty of the Birch Creek Summer Music Performance Center, teaching jazz piano, coaching jazz combos, and performing with the resident faculty big band. Dr. Stryker’s doctoral studies at the Eastman School of Music were completed fall of 2009 with the degree awarded spring of 2010. He is co-leader of a jazz quintet called Condition Blue, whose first CD, Condition Blue Live, was released January of 2007.
Birch Creek Music Performance Center in Egg Harbor, WI, is a residential summer music academy for advanced young musicians. With a performance emphasis, students are taught by nationally known performers and educators during the day, and perform alongside them in concerts at night. Four sessions focus on Percussion & Steel Band, Symphony, and Big Band Jazz. 2017 concert and session dates are posted at www.birchcreek.org/tickets.