RIC Jazz Combos to perform Oct. 14

Greg Abate, right, rehearses with RIC students.
Rhode Island College jazz students, enrolled in the jazz combo class, will play their interpretations of the American Song book of standards and classic bebop pieces in concert on Wednesday, Oct. 14. The performance will take place in the Nazarian Center’s Forman Theatre, starting at 7 p.m.

Seasoned jazz professional, saxophonist and RIC adjunct music professor Greg Abate will be introducing students and playing accompaniment. Abate started teaching Jazz at RIC in 1999.

Improvisation, Abate said, will be a fundamental part of this performance, as will some carefully crafted student compositions.

The jazz combo course is designed for smaller student ensembles and serves as applied practice of concepts learned in jazz theory, such as modal tonality, harmonic chord changes and improvisation.

Jazz combo students are learning what Abate described as “the language of jazz,” an important part of American musical heritage. The U.S. House of Representatives and Senate declared jazz a national treasure in 1987.

Several jazz combos are organized each semester and range from beginning level improvisers to more advanced ensembles. All of the combos must perform at least once a semester on campus, as a part of their course curriculum.

General admission to the concert is free. The event is open to the public.