Larry Panella, director of Jazz Studies at The University of Southern Mississippi, will honor the biggest influences in his musical career, with a special concert, “Gestures in Jazz,” on Oct. 3 in Bennett Auditorium.
The performance, set for 8 p.m., was inspired from a gesture drawing by Talmage Lamar “Toby” Tenhet, a gifted artist and musician from Mississippi. Admission is free.
“The development of any musician involves interactions, both formal and informal, with many people,” said Panella. “Some of those interactions are over extended periods and in a one-on-one setting. Others are shorter but might be with individuals of such strong presence that they are life-changing.”
Panella describes other inspirations similarly to many concertgoers -- hearing a great performance and never meeting the artist, but forming a lasting impression. Panella’s influences are particularly notable in the jazz idiom that is his musical home. There, stylistic sense, improvisation and even tone can be very personal.
“These pieces are tributes to people who had such an effect on me as a performer and teacher,” said Panella.
Joining Panella for the concert will be outstanding performers, including New York-based pianist Joel Weiskopf, drummer Leon Anderson from Florida State University, and bassist Jonathan Wires from Middle Tennessee State University.
Part of the Connoisseur Series at the Southern Miss School of Music, the concert will also be recorded for CD distribution. For more information call 601.266.5543.