RIT Kicks Off 16th Season of Performing Artists Concert Series Sept. 24

The New Energy Jazz Orchestra performs new compositions and classic jazz

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A. Sue Weisler

Jazz performers and composers Carl Atkins and Jonathan Kruger will perform with The New Energy Jazz Orchestra Sept. 24 at RIT.

The 16th season of Rochester Institute of Technology’s Performing Artists Concert Series kicks off with The New Energy Jazz Orchestra led by RIT professors Carl Atkins and Jonathan Kruger. The performance is 8 p.m. Sept. 24, in Ingle Auditorium, Student Alumni Union.

The New Energy Jazz Orchestra, a big-band ensemble, was started in 2006 by jazz performers and composers Carl Atkins and Jonathan Kruger. Both are RIT faculty members; Atkins is a professor and head of the music program and Kruger is an associate professor of music.

The band’s legacy dates back to the popular 13-piece band, Sheer Energy, formed by Atkins in 1984, with several of the players from that group—including Kruger—being part of this new ensemble. According to Atkins and Kruger, the purpose of this venture is to establish a Rochester-based ensemble to perform new compositions for jazz orchestra, as well as to perform classic repertory by international jazz composers and performers from the past and present. The band has performed and recorded widely, including appearances at the Rochester International Jazz Festival, and its musicians are comprised primarily of Rochester-based jazz musicians, many of whom have performed with artists ranging from Count Basie to Herbie Hancock.

Tickets—$5 for RIT students, $15 for RIT faculty/staff/alumni and $20 for the general public—are available starting Sept. 7 at the Gordon Field House and Activities Center box office or at Bytes on the Run at RIT. Tickets will also be available at the door, if still available. For Visa or MasterCard purchases, call 585-475-5210 or 585-475-4121.