Jazz Trombone Ensemble and Competition Finalist, Connor Frederick, perform at International Trombone Festival
This past February, it was announced that the U of I Jazz Trombone Ensemble, directed by Professor Jim Pugh, had been selected winners of the Kai Winding Jazz Trombone Ensemble Competition, sponsored annually by the International Trombone Association.
The Award included the opportunity to perform at this year's International Trombone Festival, held at the University of Redlands in Redlands, CA. They received a well deserved standing ovation from the Festival audience for their exemplary performance. Having now won this Award twice and the National Jazz Trombone Ensemble Competition three times, they have become the most highly decorated group of their kind in the world. This is especially impressive in that the Ensemble also performs only music written by members of the group.
Members of the U of I Jazz Trombone Ensemble:
Frank Niemeyer, David Fletcher, Sean Durkin, Ban Carrasquillo, Austin Seybert - trombones
Ryan Tomski - piano
José Guzman - guitar
Jonathan Small - bass
Tyler Shields - drums
Also in February 2017, Connor Frederick was announced as a Finalist in the Carl Fontana Jazz Solo Competition. He traveled with the JTE to Redlands and participated in a play-off against two other competitors earlier that same day. Connor performed a set of three tunes which he specially arranged for the performance.