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December, 15, 2021
12:15 PM - 01:15 PM


W 192


Charles Chip McNeill

Charles "Chip" McNeill
Joel Spencer

Joel Spencer
Larry Gray

Larry Gray
Tito Carrillo

Tito Carrillo
Joan Hickey

Joan Hickey
Barrington Coleman

Barrington Coleman
Ron Bridgewater

Ron Bridgewater
John Chip Stephens

John "Chip" Stephens

Strategies, Perspectives and Demonstration for a Life in Jazz Performance and Education

Clinic Synopsis:

The University of Illinois Jazz Professors will lead discussions and strategies with demonstrations addressing jazz performance and educational "strengths and challenges". -Topics include: Developing an artistic voice concept, addressing challenges to creativity, developing the group "in the moment" skills, elevating group performance, using technical proficiency to enhance individual and group musicality, development of practical exercises to enhance elasticity of jazz performance and education throughout your lifetime.

Charles "Chip" McNeill - Biographical Information

Chip McNeill is a tenured full professor and Chair of Jazz Studies at The University of Illinois. He currently tours with Doc Severinsen and the Tonight Show Band. He was the musical director and jazz tenor saxophonist for Grammy award winning recording artist Arturo Sandoval and on the Grammy Award winning release "Hot House". Mr. McNeill was the musical director and jazz saxophonist for Maynard Ferguson and produced, wrote, and performed on five CD’s with Maynard Ferguson. Mr. McNeill has performed and been a clinician at jazz festivals and clubs such as The North Sea Jazz Festival (The Hague Holland), The Montreaux Jazz Festival (Switzerland), The Monterey Jazz Festival (U.S.A.), The Noto Jazz Festival (Japan), The Wigan Jazz Festival (England), The Pori Jazz Festival (Finland). Clubs include The Blue Note (New York City), The Blue Note (Tokyo), The Blue Note (Osaka), Blues Alley (Washington D.C.), The House of Blues (Los Angeles), and The Jazz Showcase (Chicago). Recording credits include Doc Severinsen, Arturo Sandoval, Nat Adderley, David Liebman, Maynard Ferguson, Duffy Jackson, Ira Sullivan, The Woody Herman Orchestra. Numerous world tours with Arturo Sandoval, Maynard Ferguson, the Woody Herman Orchestra, the University of Miami Concert Jazz Band, and the North Texas State 1 o'clock Lab Band. Other performances include Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Natalie Cole, Joe Williams, Dizzy Gillespie, Billy Eckstine, Wynton Marsalis, Randy and Michael Brecker, Nat Adderley, David Liebman, Bob Mintzer, Slide Hampton, Tom Harrell, Paquito D'Riviera.

Joel Spencer - Biographical Information

Joel Spencer Professor Spencer has performed with Earl “Fatha” Hines, Hank Jones, and Cedar Walton; guitarists Barney Kessel, Kenny Burrell, and Herb Ellis; bassists Eddie Gomez and Buster Williams; vocalists Cissy Houston, Billy Eckstine, and Mark Murphy; trumpeters Red Rodney, Clark Terry, Chet Baker, Freddie Hubbard; saxophonists Sonny Stitt, Benny Golson, Joe Henderson, Eddie Harris, Wayne Shorter, and David Liebman, the Count Basie Orchestra , jazz vocalist Eddie Jefferson, vocalist Barbra Streisand, and Barry Manilow. Spencer’s formal training has resulted in numerous appearances with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra featuring Michael Feinstein, Broadway vocalists Patti Lupone and Kristin Chenoweth, trumpeter Doc Severinsen, and former Chicago Symphony conductor Daniel Barenboim. From 1985-2005 Spencer greatly succeeded in the competitive studio recording industry in Chicago where he recorded hundreds of national TV product commercials, movie soundtracks, and over 50 nationally/internationally released jazz recordings. Joel Spencer’s career as a jazz artist continues to provide him with an extensive palette of performances and recordings, as he has performed with artists from virtually every era and genre of jazz.

Larry Gray - Biographical Information

Bassist, multi-instrumentalist and composer, Larry Gray has played with a long list of important, legendary jazz musicians, beginning with his first gigs at Chicago’s Jazz Showcase in the 1970s with greats such as Sonny Stitt, Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis, Donald Byrd, Joe Pass among others, and touring with Clark Terry, Joe Williams, Marian McPartland, Frank Wess, Monty Alexander, to recent work with Jack DeJohnette’s Special Edition Legends on ECM Record, and with Larry Coryell’s trio. After many years working as a recording artist in Chicago and playing a wide range of musical styles including working as substitute in the bass section of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Larry joined the faculty at University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign School of Music 2007, where he is an associate professor of jazz studies and teaches a wide range of students. He has released five CDs as a leader and appears on many other recordings, including several CDs as a member of the Ramsey Lewis Trio, with whom he toured extensively for more than a decade. Larry Gray’s website is

Tito Carrillo - Biographical Information

Tito Carrillo joined the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign faculty in the Spring of 2006. He is a trumpeter, educator, bandleader, composer, and arranger, and since 1996 he has been a fixture in the Chicago jazz and Latin music scenes. The list of artists he has performed, recorded, and toured with is as varied as his skill set: Chicago heavyweights Willie Pickens, Bobby Broom, Patricia Barber, and Kurt Elling; big bands such as the Woody Herman Orchestra, Chicago Jazz Ensemble, Chicago Jazz Orchestra, and Smithsonian Masterworks Orchestra (directed by David Baker); jazz greats such as Toshiko Akiyoshi, Louis Hayes, Jon Faddis, and Vincent Herring; Salsa legends such as Andy Montaoez, Tony Vega, and Cheo Feliciano; Latin jazz giants Tito Puente and Paquito D'Rivera; and pop icons Quincy Jones and Phil Collins. Carrillo has played some of the most prestigious venues in the world, including Chicago's Symphony Center, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, and London's Royal Albert Hall. His work has been heard at international jazz festivals in Chicago, Telluride, Montreux (Switzerland), North Sea Jazz Festival in The Hague (Netherlands), and Pori, Finland. As an educator, he served on the faculties at both the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, as well as Northwestern University prior to his appointment at Illinois. He has also brought his talents as an educator and performer to Chicago's inner-city high schools through the Ravinia Festival's community outreach program, the Ravinia Jazz Mentors.

Joan Hickey - Biographical Information

Joan teaches and performs jazz piano as a free-lance artist in the Chicago area. She has been recording and leading her own groups (trio, quartet. sextet) since the 1980’s. Venues include the many jazz clubs around the Chicago area. She has performed at the Chicago Jazz Festival with an all-star group of jazz icons that included Milt Hinton and Cab Calloway, then later, her own quintet. Tours include Italy, Sweden, and Denmark with the Jazz Members Big Band. She has been awarded 2 National Endowment for the Arts grants and two Illinois Arts Council grants in music composition, She was a finalist in the Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz competition at Kennedy Center, and her quintet was a finalist in the Hennessy Jazz Competition. She has two CDs under own name, “Soulmates” which was nominated for Best jazz C.D. at the Chicago Music Awards, and “Between the Lines”. She was featured in the Women in Jazz festival in Chicago in March, 2008. Joan has a Masters in jazz performance and a B.S in music education. In addition to her position at University of Illinois, Joan maintains a private studio of students in Wilmette, Il. Many of her students have gone on to be professional musicians. She coaches jazz combos at New Trier high school and various summer camps, including ISYM and Midwest Young Artists. She has been a judge on the Notre Dame Jazz fest, Luminarts competition, and the American Pianists Association Cole Porter Fellowship.

Barrington Coleman - Biographical Information

-Dr. Coleman has served as an assistant instructor in the study of Aural Skills at the locale of his doctoral studies, the Juilliard School of Music, and an Associate Professor of Voice and conductor of the Varsity Men’s Glee Club since 1996 at the University of Illinois. A professor of vocal studies, aural skills, humanities, performing vocal artist, pianist, and choral conductor, Barrington Coleman has performed and recorded as a tenor soloist with such esteemed organizations as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, Music of the Baroque Ensemble, Royal Opera House of Covent Garden, La Fenice (Venice, Italy), Glyndebourne Opera, London Philharmonic and Symphony Orchestras, and the Sunday Evening Club of WTTW-TV in Chicago. He has performed with, as a jazz pianist with many prominent jazz artists ,including Christian McBride, Lonnie Plaxico, Sam Rivers, in addition to Coleman’s own jazz trio. Having served as an assistant professor of voice at his Alma Mater, Illinois Wesleyan University, and a guest artist/choral conductor at the location of his Masters degree studies, Northwestern University. Dr. Coleman has served as an assistant instructor in the study of Aural Skills at the locale of his doctoral studies, the Juilliard School of Music, and an Associate Professor of Voice, Associate Professor of Jazz Vocal Studies, and conductor of the Varsity Men’s Glee Club since 1996 at the University of Illinois.

Jim Pugh - Biographical Information

Jim Pugh joined the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign faculty in 2005. Jim is a distinguished trombonist, composer, and educator. Whether he is performing as a concerto soloist in a symphonic setting, recording and touring with legendary artists in the fields of classical, jazz, and rock, or bringing forth his own exciting new compositions that expand the role of brass in contemporary music, his creativity knows no boundaries. After studies with the legendary Emory Remington at the Eastman School of Music, he toured extensively as lead and solo trombone with the Woody Herman Band and with Chick Corea before opting to settle down in New York City. Jim became New York's top-call freelance trombonist for film scores, records, and music for television and radio advertising: over the past thirty-years he has lent his special talent to more than four thousand recording sessions. His trombone can be heard in recorded collaboration with leading classical and popular artists and orchestras such as Yo-Yo Ma, Steely Dan, Eos, Concordia, St. Luke’s Orchestra, André Previn, Paul Simon, Barbara Streisand, Tony Bennett, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Pink Floyd, and Frank Sinatra. Jim has been called on to add his solo trombone to feature film soundtracks including A League of Their Own, When Harry Met Sally, Meet Joe Black, and on hit Broadway cast recordings City of Angels, Fosse and Victor/Victoria. Since 2000 he has been the solo trombonist with the seminal jazz/rock group Steely Dan, both recording and touring.

Ron Bridgewater - Biographical Information

Ron Bridgewater began his professional career in 1972 with a State Department tour of Japan, Europe, the Soviet Union, and the United States in the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra. After three years with the band and several recordings, he appeared as a regular member of ensembles led by such jazz greats as Max Roach, McCoy Tyner and Horace Silver. Along with his brother, trumpeter Cecil Bridgewater, Ron led a group known as the Bridgewater Brothers which recorded two albums and toured the United States and Japan. He also toured with jazz great Cab Calloway. Prof. Bridgewater was also frequently on call for Broadway shows such as Ain't Misbehavin', Sophisticated Ladies, and Lena Horne - The Lady and Her Music, for which he was also assistant musical director. For more than 20 years, Bridgewater was a mainstay on the New York music scene, where he taught in Billy Taylor's Jazzmobile Workshop and freelanced. He is featured in Cecil Bridgewater's 1998 CD release, Mean What You Say, on Brownstone Records. He has been a featured performer in New York's Sweet Basil Club and The Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles, and he performed by invitation at the International Association of Jazz Educators Conference in Anaheim, California, where he received a Certificate of Appreciation for his outstanding service to jazz education. At the University of Illinois, Prof. Bridgewater teaches jazz saxophone, jazz styles, a combo and jazz saxophone ensemble.

John "Chip" Stephens - Biographical Information

Jazz pianist Chip Stephens’ collaborative, recording and world-wide touring with some of the legendary figures in the history of jazz, is extensive. He has performed on Grammy and Emmy Award winning recordings. Since 2005, Stephens has been consistently ranked in the top 10% of University of Illinois Professors. He was recognized by the Provost, Vice Chancellor and the Committee on Tenure and Promotion as being “Extraordinary for the level of his Teaching and Collaborative Artistry.” Stephens can be heard on nearly 80 records and compact discs as a side-man and band leader. He has performed with some of the most prestigious names in jazz and his performing credits are many and include; Eden Atwood, Michael Brecker, Jerry Brown, Kenny Burrell, John Fedchock, Maynard Ferguson, Curtis Fuller, George Garzone, Greg Gisbert, Benny Golson, The Woody Herman Orchestra, Charlie Haden, Conrad Herwig, Milt Hinton, Red Holloway, Denise Irwin, Javon Jackson, Ingrid Jensen, Randy Johnston, Steve Kirby, Bill Kirchner, Ernie Krivda, Ralph Lalama, Tony Leonardi, Joe Lovano, Charles McPherson, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, Keith Oxman, Tito Puente, Nelson Rangell, Arturo Sandoval, Bobby Shew, Frank Sinatra Jr., Howie Smith, Clark Terry, Frank Tiberi, Roseanna Vitro, The Jim Widner Big Band and Glenn Wilson. He maintains a very diverse teaching and performing career at both the national and international levels and has over fifteen years of teaching experience at the university level.