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Jazz and pop rock students team up for concert at Burnight Center

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The Cerritos College music department will be presenting a Jazz and Pop/Rock Exchange Concert on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in the Burnight Center Building (BC-51).

Although the concert is named an exchanged concert, it will only feature Cerritos College students from the jazz and pop/rock ensemble and will be composed of a variety of music.

The jazz ensemble will be preforming various kinds of big band songs.

David Betancourt, director of bands and orchestra, said, “We try to vary, so we’ll have stuff from different eras from the early big band 1940s and then all the way up to stuff that has been written lately.”

The pop/rock group will be composed of a variety of genres including funk, rock, latin, pop and any modern type of music.

“The goal for me as a teacher is not to work toward this performance.

This performance, documents everything they’ve learned prior to the performance, so it is more of what I would like them to learn throughout the semester,” Betancourt said.

“I want the audience to listen to (the bands) and hear the evidence of what they have learned. They might not know exactly what they’ve learned but they would be like ‘wow that was really cool, how they do that.” he said.

Over the course of the semester, the jazz ensemble’s goal is to work toward mastering its instruments and understanding the different styles of jazz.
The jazz ensemble especially have to learn how to play together in groups, since it has to listen to certain cues.

Throughout the semester the pop/rock ensemble learn how to work together without the director giving them all the information. They learn how to put together their group, how to put together a song list, how to rehearse.

Alos, how to get all the equipment together, and how to manage time so eventually the students can do it on their own.

Victor Hugo Herrera, political science major and trombone player for the pop/rock ensemble, is excited to show the school how much they have progressed through the semester.
“I just picked up the trombone this semester so I’m excited and nervous,” Herrera said. “We do a lot of work, I know people just think we just throw it together and jam but that’s not true it is a lot of work.

The goal of the concert for Betancourt is to have the students become independent.

“At the performance, if they learn what I’m hoping they have, I won’t be at stage at all,” Betancourt said. “I’ll just be listening in the audience just like everybody else because they would have figured everything else out and they will sound fantastic.”

Michael Enriquez, music major and drummer for both jazz and pop/rock ensemble, encourages other students to go to the concert.

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