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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    UA Studio Jazz Ensemble presents ‘Ya Gotta Try’


    The UA Studio Jazz Ensemble is hosting its first concert of the year, “”Ya Gotta Try.””

    “”We’re going to be doing a really varied, mixed program, drawing on some of the older big band music, and some of the newer, most cutting-edge stuff,”” said Moises Paiewonsky, music professor and director of the UA Studio Jazz Ensemble.

    The traditional big band sound will be provided in the concert by pieces such as “”Bright Eyes”” by Bill Holman, “”Back of the Bus”” by John Labarbera, and Mike Crotty’s arrangement of Miles Davis’s  “”Nardis.””

    Representing jazz’s contemporary side is “”Wyrgly,”” composed by Maria Schneider, founder of The Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra.

    “”She’s writing a lot of very different music,”” Paiewonsky said. “”Her music is all very groove-oriented.””

    The piece is not a normal big band sound, but a mixture of different musical aesthetics, he said.

    “”There are points where half the band is playing in double time and half the band is playing in a half time,”” he said.  “”You get these short bursts and hits in the brass, while the saxes are playing this bluesy, funky, half time thing.””

    The subject of the piece is also different from the normal big band themes.

    “”The whole tune is based on this dream that she had about a monster,”” Paiewonsky said. “”It starts kind of frantic and hectic and then it gets into this real sad, groovy part, and then it erupts into this climatic thing with the different times and that’s where the nightmare gets big, and then it ends with a nice little fade-out. It’s representing this nightmare that gets huge and then dies down again.””

    As director, Paiewonsky’s main challenge was getting the band to mesh with each other.

    “”As semesters come in and out, students graduate, new students join the School of Music, and it’s an audition-based group, so each semester there are new people and it is sort of a challenge to get the group gelling with each other and to get the group to get a feel for each other, so we can get things tight and so we can play this difficult music, so it’ll come across clearly,”” he said.

    However, Paiewonsky is sure that the concert will be a success.

    “”When people think big band, a lot of times they think (Glenn Miller’s 1939 standard) ‘In the Mood,’ and they don’t understand that the big band vehicle is a lot more than just swing,”” he said. “”Big band plays ballads, up tempo swing stuff, not just dance music. The big band sounds phenomenal this year, the program’s going to be very exciting, and there’s going to be a lot of variety.””

    He also recommends it to those who are looking for a break from midterm studying.

    “”It’s kind of an uplifting middle-of-the-semester, keep-grinding thing,”” he said. “”It’s just a nice thing to do, to get away from your studies for one night, and check out a swinging big band.””

    “”Ya Gotta Try”” will be performed on Oct. 21 at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $5. For more information, visit


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