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The University of Alabama

Jazz Quintet Leads Off Sonic Frontiers Music Series at UA

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Harris Eisenstadt and his critically acclaimed quintet, Canada Day, will lead off Sonic Frontiers, a cutting-edge avant-garde jazz series on The University of Alabama campus.

The first concert will be at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 27, at UA’s Ferguson Center Theater. The concert is free and open to the public.

Harris Eisenstadt

The Sonic Frontiers series is designed to further artistic diversity on the UA campus, says series organizer Dr. Andrew Raffo Dewar, assistant professor in New College and the School of Music.

The concerts will foster creative exchange among music professionals, UA students, faculty and staff, and the greater community through performances and class visits by world-class performers of avant-garde jazz.

The concerts are sponsored by UA’s New College, Capstone International, the College of Arts and Sciences, the Blount Undergraduate Initiative, the UA School of Music, the department of race & gender studies and Creative Campus.

For more information on the series, phone 205/348-7884 or visit

Eisenstadt and Canada Day’s first album, released in 2009, received four stars in Downbeat magazine and made its way into several end-of-the-year top 10 lists. The band itself debuted in 2007 and has received high praise from critics since its inception. says, “An accessible blend of inside and outside traditions delivered by an empathetic young ensemble, Canada Day is a welcome addition to the burgeoning discography of one of the new generation’s leading composers.”

Subsequent concerts and events are:

Wednesday, March 21: Saxophonist Jack Wright, the “Johnny Appleseed of free improvisation,” will visit a New College seminar and perform a community-outreach solo concert in a venue to be determined. For details, go to

Friday, April 6: Bassist and composer Trevor Dunn’s Endangered Blood quartet from New York will perform at 7:30 p.m. in the Ferguson Center Theater. Dunn is known for  his work with the rock band Mr. Bungle, but Endangered Blood is his avant-jazz project featuring internationally acclaimed musicians Jim Black on drums and Chris Speed and Oscar Noriega on saxophone.

Monday, April 23: A public screening of eminent ethnomusicologist Steven Feld’s 2009 documentary film about Ghanaian musician, inventor and visual artist Nii Noi Nortey, “Accra Trane Station: The Music and Art of Nii Noi Nortey,” will be at 5:30 p.m in 132 Lloyd Hall.

Wednesday, April 25: Nii Noi Nortey, the acclaimed saxophonist and saxophone inventor from Accra, Ghana, will offer a two-day residency involving a concert of solos, duos and trios with Dewar and renowned Japanese-American percussionist Tatsuya Nakatani at 7:30 p.m. April 25 at the Ferguson Center Theater. Nortey’s visit includes four class visits at UA on April 25 and 26 in the School of Music and New College.

Under the auspices of UA’s Office of Academic Affairs, Creative Campus is a collaborative system connecting students, faculty and community to nurture innovative thinkers who turn ideas into action. Creative Campus seeks to serve as a hub of collaboration and creative activity at The University of Alabama. At the heart of Creative Campus is the undergraduate and graduate intern program. For more information on Creative Campus visit

New College is part of UA’s College of Arts and Sciences, the University’s largest division and the largest liberal arts college in the state. Students from the College have won numerous national awards including Rhodes Scholarships, Goldwater Scholarships and memberships on the USA Today Academic All American Team.

The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.