TYLER, TX (KLTV) – The sounds of drums, trumpets and other instruments fill the UT Tyler campus with the start of an annual jazz camp.
This is the fifth year of the camp and the participants range in age from 13 to 65 years old. They spend the week learning all things jazz, from improvisation to jazz listening and history lessons. Dr. Sarah Roberts is an associate professor of saxophone and jazz studies at UT Tyler and founded the camp.
“Jazz is American music, it was the first kind of pop music in our country and every kind of music that we have, that we consider American music, and even music around the world has been influenced by jazz,” she said. “So that really laid the foundation for what we call pop music, rock music, and country.”
JT Pundt plays trumpet and was at camp for five years.
“I learn something every time. I love meeting new people and having the chance to play with people and having the chance to hear other people. It’s always great to perform in front of an audience in live,” Pundt said.
Being the first day of the camp, the musicians were divided by skill and started working on the music. This is Simon Elliott’s second year at camp. Elliot said he’s been playing music since middle school.
“There are a lot of new faces and a lot of new experienced players. It helps me a lot, to grow, I want to be with the most experienced and talented to better understand what I need to work on and focus on,” Elliott said.
This year they bring in New York saxophonist Chad LB and will play with him at a concert later in the week.
“It’s important that we continue to teach the history and traditions of jazz so that it stays alive,” Roberts said. “And for students to continue to learn the significance and how it really influenced everything they listen to.”
For more information on performances, times and locations, click here.
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