SAXsational! with the North Medford H.S. Jazz Band

Friday, October 12, 2018  7:00 PM

Sjolund Auditorium, North Medford High School
1900 Keene Way Drive, Medford, OR 97504

Saxophone virtuoso Rob Verdi performs with talented school music students

JC Concerts opens the 2018-2019 season showcasing the musical talents of The North Medford High School Jazz Band and Wind Ensemble, under Director Steve Kessler, who will share the stage with saxophone virtuoso Rob Verdi as they perform beautiful arrangements of pieces utilizing the many variety of saxophones.. The show features saxophones ranging from a tiny curved sopranino to a 6 ft tall contrabass and includes a variety of popular songs associated with the sax such as Tequila, Pink Panther and Yakety Sax.

NMHS Concert Band with Director Steve Kessler

The award winning North Medford High School Jazz Band under Director Steve Kessler has performed at Disneyland, at numerous competitions and festivals, at football games  and sporting events, on television broadcasts, and of course, on their home stage, Sjolund Auditorium of North Medford High School, where they will play this concert.

Saxophone maestro Rob Verdi, who is the Disney Jazz Workshop Conductor,  explores the new generation of popular music with local school jazz bands and joins them in performing a repertoire of swing era classics along with trendy pop, rock and R&B songs in a professional concert setting.


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Music For Two Pianos

Sunday, November 18, 2018  3:00 PM

Sjolund Auditorium, North Medford High School
1900 Keene Way Drive, Medford, OR 97504

International Concert Pianist Dr. Alexander Tutunov & Special Guest Dr. Brian Hall

Renowned international concert pianist Dr. Alexander Tutunov and his special guest, classically trained pianist turned anesthesiologist, local resident Dr. Brian Hall,  will perform a great mix of beloved romantic music, such as Rachmaninoff’s Piano Suite No. 2 and modern ragtime compositions like Bolcom’s Garden of Eden Suite.

Alexander Tutunov

Alexander Tutunov is widely recognized as one of the most outstanding virtuosos of the former Soviet Union. First Prize winner of the Belarusian National Piano Competition and winner of the Russian National Piano Competition. Tutunov’s playing was described by Soviet Culture, Moscow, as “exhilarating and inspired, and which demonstrated a unique talent”. Dr. Tutunov maintains a busy performing schedule in Europe, China, Mexico, and the United States as a recitalist, soloist with orchestra, and on radio and television. Dr. Tutunov is also in demand as an adjudicator for piano competitions. Alexander Tutunov now lives in Ashland, where he is Professor of Piano and Artist in Residence at Southern Oregon University.

Dr. Brian Hall

2015 Seattle International Piano Competition award winner Brian Hall lives in Medford, Oregon with his wife and five children. He has worked as an anesthesiologist in Medford for over thirteen years. In addition, he currently serves as the Chief of Staff at Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center. Before attending medical school at the University of Utah he completed a bachelors degree in piano performance at Brigham Young University, where he studied with Dr. Paul Pollei. Brian’s wife Jill is also a musician, and music plays an important role in their home. He believes music is vitally important for developing children into well-rounded adults. Brian was blessed to find a new piano mentor in Dr. Alexander Tutunov. Alexander’s incredible musical talents and great generosity were instrumental in Brian returning to the stage.


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International Concert Pianist Ilya Yakushev

Friday, March 22, 2019  7:00 PM

Sjolund Auditorium, North Medford High School
1900 Keene Way Drive, Medford, OR 97504

Award winning Pianist Ilya Yakushev

Russian pianist Ilya Yakushev will be performing  a program which features compositions by Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, and Gershwin as well as Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition. Mr. Yakushev’s performance incorporates a multi-media presentation and is visually and technically spectacular.

Mr. Yakushev has earned many awards and prizes in international piano competitions, beginning at the age of 12, when he won the Young Artists Concerto Competition in his native St. Petersburg. In 1997, he received the Mayor of St. Petersburg’s Young Talents award, and in both 1997 and 1998, he won First Prize at the Donostia Hiria International Piano Competition in San Sebastian, Spain. In 1998, he received The Award for Excellence in Performance, presented by the Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation in Moscow. In 2005, he won the 2005 World Piano Competition which took place in Cincinnati, OH. Most recently, Mr. Yakushev became a recipient of the prestigious Gawon International Music Society’s Award in Seoul, Korea.

Mr. Yakushev attended the Rimsky-Korsakov College of Music in his native St. Petersburg, Russia, and subsequently came to New York City to attend Mannes College of Music where he studied with legendary pianist Vladimir Feltsman.

In recent years, he has been very busy performing at major venues and with prominent orchestras around the world. Highlights of Yakushev’s 2017-18 season included return appearances with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Edmonton Symphony, Las Cruces Symphony, and Reading Symphony, as well as performances with Decatur Symphony and Johnstown Symphony. He also has played recitals in Texas, Louisiana, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York this season.  In the 2016-17 season, Ilya Yakushev appeared as piano soloist with the symphony orchestras of New Haven (CT), El Paso (TX), Dubuque (IA), La Crosse (WI), Lake Forest (IL); and Glacier Symphony (MT), in addition to recitals in New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Tennessee, and Washington.

In past seasons, he has performed in various prestigious venues worldwide, including Glinka Philharmonic Hall (St. Petersburg), Victoria Hall (Singapore), Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall (New York), Davies Symphony Hall (San Francisco), and Sejong Performing Arts Center (Seoul, Korea). His performances with orchestra include those with the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, BBC Concert Orchestra, Boston Pops, Rochester Philharmonic, Utah Symphony, and many others.

Mr. Yakushev’s prowess with the piano has also been demonstrated on several published recordings. In February 2014, British label Nimbus Records published his CD, Prokofiev Sonatas Vol. 1. American Record Guide wrote “Yakushev is one of the very best young pianists before the public today, and it doesn’t seem to matter what repertoire he plays – it is all of the highest caliber”. Volume 2 was published in January 2017, as well as an all-Russian repertoire CD in September 2017.

Ilya Yakushev is a Yamaha artist.


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An American In Paris

Sunday, June 2, 2019  3:00 PM

Sjolund Auditorium, North Medford High School
1900 Keene Way Drive, Medford, OR 97504

Pianist Christine Eggert & Trumpeter Dan Kocurek perform their American In Paris program

Trumpet player Dan Kocurek and pianist Christine Eggert will present a music program titled “American in Paris” that allows listeners to watch a movie in their minds as the music unfolds. Along the way the duo will perform wonderful music by Debussy, Gershwin, Stravinsky and Piazzolla, as well as some provocative cabaret songs and music made famous by singer Edith Piaf. Their jazz and cafe music repertoire is from the legends who visited and worked in Paris during the ’20s, as well as charming — and disarming — music that made it big on the radio and on stage.

Dan Kocurek

Trumpeter Daniel Kocurek has worked extensively as a soloist, chamber musician, studio musician, and clinician and is a strong advocate of music performance that not only touches people on a sonic level, but also moves them to their core. As lead trumpet in the world-renowned Dallas Brass, he performed throughout North America, in front of audiences numbering to over 10,000 people. His travels have led to performances with Jens Lindemann, Mark Gould, Ryan Anthony, Marty Hackleman, Alain Trudel, Nancy DiNovo and Bobby Shew, among many others.

Dan has been a frequently featured soloist on many programs ranging from baroque trumpet masterpieces to transcriptions of cello works on his custom 4-valve Flugelhorn. These include multiple appearances with the University of British Columbia Symphony Orchestra, Wind Ensemble and Chamber Strings, as well as the Vancouver Bach Choir, the Pro Nova Ensemble, the West Coast Symphony, the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra, and 2017 appearances with the Rogue Valley Symphony.

Dan received his formal classical training under the tutelage of Brian McWhorter, Larry Knopp, and Martin Berinbaum and has been the recipient of a number of prizes in both classical and jazz idioms, notably tuition scholarships at the Manhattan School of Music and the Chicago Conservatory of Performing Arts.

Dan leads the trumpet studio at the Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University, is co-principal trumpet with the Rogue Valley Symphony, directs the Rogue Valley Symphonic Band and is lead trumpet with the Tony Award-Winning Oregon Shakespeare Festival. He resides in Ashland, Oregon. 

Christine Eggert

Pianist Christine Eggert  debuted on CBC radio as a piano soloist at age 16, and she has since performed across Canada and internationally in the United States, Austria, and Ireland. Christine holds a Masters from University of British Columbia, a Bachelor’s of Music with Distinction from University of Alberta, an ARCT from Royal Conservatory of Toronto, and has completed collaborative piano studies at the Schubert Institute in Baden bei Wien, Austria, under the world’s foremost lieder specialists, including Rudolf Jansen, Helmut Deutsch, Roger Vignoles, Elly Ameling, and Julius Drake.

In 2014 Christine joined the Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University as Artist Faculty in the music department, where she teaches core theory and history as well as piano. Christine directs a concert series in Vancouver, Canada, and tours as a collaborative pianist, recently including UBC’s director of strings Eric Wilson and separately, trumpeter Dan Kocurek. She maintains a private piano studio, and is a Tholen Fellow with through Portland Piano International since 2015.

Christine Eggert & Dan Kocurek

Dan and Christine have established themselves as an international touring concert duo performing in tandem. As Les Deux, they have been called a “musical powerhouse” whose programs have been hailed as being “musically provocative, presented with charm and a deliciously human touch”.



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