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Released April 19, 2004



HATTIESBURG - If you think you have to go to Bourbon Street in New Orleans to hear good live jazz and renowned performers, Larry Panella, associate professor of music and director of the jazz studies program at The University of Southern Mississippi, would like to change your mind.

Joining the Jazz Lab Band I in concert April 25 in the Mannoni Performing Arts Center Auditorium will be famed trumpeter Bobby Shew. Born in Albuquerque, N.M., Shew began playing the trumpet at the age of 10. Since then, he has performed with such jazz legends as the Tommy Dorsey Band (with Sam Donahue) and the bands of Woody Herman and Buddy Rich.

"Many jazz fans tend to think that jazz trumpeters can play both the high lead parts in a big band and the improvised solos," Panella said. "Truth is that the ability to do both types of playing is not commonly found in one individual. What makes Bobby Shew such an amazing player is that he does both extremely well. He's a trumpet player's trumpet player in all respects."

Panella thinks his band - which has given three performances already during the 2002-03 academic year at Southern Miss - is in top form and ready to play with its prolific guest artist. Panella praises the students' ability to learn new material quickly.

"As always, we try to do both new pieces and some traditional big band pieces in our concerts," Panella said. "Bobby's feature pieces encompass all of that. We'll be playing tunes such as 'A Night in Tunisia' by Dizzy Gillespie, 'Up Jumped Spring' by trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and 'Beautiful Love' by Victor Young."

Other program highlights include "There is No Greater Love" by Marty Symes and Isham Jones and Billy Strayhorn's ballad "Lush Life," which also features Shew.

The Jazz Lab Band II, led by jazz graduate assistant Paul Garcia, will join in on the act as well Shew, as a lead player, has traveled with the likes of Robert Goulet, Paul Anka, Della Reese and Steve Allen before settling down in Las Vegas for nine years. He then pulled up roots again and moved to Los Angeles in 1973 to return to jazz - playing in the combos of Bud Shank, Art Pepper, Horace Silver and Frank Strazzeri. In the big band arena, Shew has played lead for Don Menza, Neal Hefti, Frank Capp-Nat Pierce, Bill Berry and Oliver Nelson.

Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. concert in the Mannoni Performing Arts Center Auditorium are $6 for adult admission and $3 for Southern Miss faculty, staff and students, senior citizens (65-plus) and children under 12. For tickets, call the Southern Miss Ticket Office at (601) 266-5418 or 1-800-844-8425. Order online at

The Southern Miss jazz band and Shew will give an encore performance the next day, April 26, at "Jazz in the Grove" - The Bay Springs Jazz Festival. For information about the festival, call (601) 764-2121.


OCEAN SPRINGS -- Award-winning wildlife photographer Tom Ulrich will lead two photographic events at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory on Wednesday, March 10.

He will present a nature photography workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and then a talk and slide show called "Wildlife Images 2003" at 7 p.m., both at The University of Southern Mississippi GCRL.

Admission to the evening event is free and will be held in the Caylor Auditorium at GCRL. The veteran photographer will feature photos from his 2003 photographic safaris abroad and in North America. He will answer questions and sign his books during the reception following his slide show.

The registration fee for the all-day workshop is $50 per person, payable to GCRL. Registration includes a continental breakfast, light lunch and snacks. Participation is limited to 20. Though the workshop is geared toward beginners, Ulrich tailors the experience to meet needs for all degrees of skill.

"The beginners will definitely benefit from the workshop, but I always help the more advanced get something out of it also," Ulrich said. "I lead many photo trips and always find a wide range of levels."

Ulrich said participants do not need to bring their photographic equipment unless they need an explanation about some aspect of their equipment.

Topics include a brief review of the principles of photography, relationships between shutter and aperture settings, fundamental elements of composition, use and timing of fill-in flash, digital versus film photography, techniques of close-up photography, and a brief discussion of slide etiquette, the photography business and marketing.

Ulrich grew up in South Chicago, graduated with a degree in biology from Southern Illinois University and taught for four years before launching his career as a freelance photographer. He has supported himself with nature photography for the past 29 years.

His library of more than 300,000 transparencies includes birds and mammals from all over the world. His photographs have been featured in publications such as National Wildlife, Audubon, National Geographic, Montana Outdoors and Life.

He has published six nature books, including Mammals of the Rockies, Birds of the Northern Rockies, Once Upon a Frame and his 2002 release, Photo Pantanal. Dr. William E. Hawkins, GCRL executive director, said Ulrich brings the scientific and artistic worlds together.

"Tom earns his living photographing wildlife all over the world," Hawkins sad. "He is an outstanding observer and a biologist. His approach to photography is to capture his subjects exhibiting their natural behavior."

The GCRL is home to the university's Department of Coastal Sciences, the Center for Fisheries Research and Development, and the Gulf Coast Geospatial Center. The J.L. Scott Marine Education Center and Aquarium is also a unit of the laboratory. The GCRL is part of the Southern Miss College of Science and Technology. For more information, call the laboratory at (228) 872-4200.


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April 20, 2004 4:09 PM