Jazz Festival

Friday, April 14, 2023

Clinics: Throughout the day

Evening Concert: 7 p.m., Edson Auditorium in the Edward J. and Helen Jane Morrison Performing Arts Center

Ticket options:

  • Concert attendance only
  • Enhanced Ticket for individual (adult or student). Provides access to the afternoon masterclasses and the evening concert.
  • Band director Small Ensemble. Includes band clinic timeslot and access to afternoon masterclasses and evening concert for a band up to 10 students.
  • Band director Large Ensemble. Includes band clinic timeslot and access to afternoon masterclasses and evening concert for a band up to 20 students.

Purchase tickets 

UMN Morris Jazz and Contemporary Music Studies, its alumni, and friends welcome regional middle school and high school students to our campus for the return of Jazz Fest 2023! Middle school and high school students will take part in an all-day clinic, and the public will be treated to an evening concert headlined by our amazing guest artists/clinicians:

Justin Ray

Justin Ray

As a professional touring musician and educator, Justin Ray recently retired from Michael Bublé’s orchestra where he spent almost two decades as trumpet soloist, vocalist, and arranger. He has toured 45 countries, appeared on Grammy-winning recordings, and has performed at the Sydney Opera House, Radio City Music Hall, and the Hollywood Bowl along with multiple performances on The Late Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show (with both Jay Leno and Jimmy Fallon), the Oprah Winfrey Show, and Saturday Night Live.





Rick Simerly

Rick Simerly has been described by David Baker as “…one of the most exciting and consistently creative trombonists in jazz today.” Jamey Aebersold depicts him as “…an astounding player with fantastic range and a keen sense of developing a solo. His playing takes you on musical journeys and each one is different and exciting.” The Online Trombone Journal states “Rick Simerly is in the upper ranks of contemporary trombonists”, while the Jazz Review declares “…when jazz fans think about great trombone players, only a few names come to mind, J.J. Johnson, Steve Turre, or maybe Bill Watrous. Soon jazz fans will be praising the slide horn of Rick Simerly.” The International Trombone Association Journal wrote “Rick leaves no doubt about his mastery…Rick is “scary”!


Bill Bares

Bill Bares

Dr. William Bares holds a MM in jazz piano performance from the University of Miami and a PhD in ethnomusicology from Harvard University under the supervision of the Quincy Jones Professor of African American Music.  ?He has taught at Harvard, Brown, NEC, Suffolk University and Berklee College of Music before becoming co-director of Jazz Studies at UNC Asheville, where he conducts research, directs several ensembles and teaches courses on jazz history, harmony and improvisation, and African American music, as well as in the humanities. ?His book, Jazz and the European Dream: A Transatlantic Eternal Triangle, is forthcoming on Routledge Press.





Zach Page

Zack Page

One of the southeast United States top call double bassists, Zack Page's music career has taken him to all 50 U.S. States, the Caribbean islands, Australia, South America, Europe and the Far East. Following time spent in Los Angeles and New York City, Zack and his family relocated to Asheville, NC where he enjoys a busy performing and recording schedule with many of North Carolina's finest musicians.  Current projects include The Page Brothers Band, Eleanor Underhill and Friends and The Core.


Michael Davis

Michael W. Davis

Michael W. Davis is a drummer, educator and recording artist based in Brooklyn who has worked with such artists as Wayne Krantz, Joshua Redman, Jason Moran, Tim Lefebvre, James Genus, Sara Caswell, Cyrus Chestnut, Bob Sheppard, Gregory Tardy, Gregg Belisle-Chi, Bob Lanzetti and many others. He is also a founding member of soul-rock band Caitlin Krisko & The Broadcast, with whom he records and tours internationally. He has earned degrees from Manhattan School of Music and City College of New York, and is currently an adjunct professor at City College of New York.