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December, 19, 2019
07:30 PM - 08:45 PM


Ballroom W196




MUCS William C. Mulligan

Performer Details

Performer Bio Synopsis

Jazz is America’s music and the U.S. Navy Band Commodores, the Navy’s premier jazz ensemble, has been performing the very best of big band jazz for the nation for 50 years. Formed in 1969, this 18-member group continues the jazz big band legacy with some of the finest musicians in the world. The Commodores perform public concerts across the country, present jazz education classes and clinics, and provide ceremonial and protocol support for high-level military and civilian government officials. The Commodores are held in high regard nationwide by audiences and critics alike. The list of guest artists that have appeared with the Commodores reads like a who’s who of jazz and popular music: Ray Charles, Branford Marsalis, Clark Terry, Grover Washington, Jr., Chris Potter, Jerry Bergonzi, Eddie Daniels, James Moody and many more. They have appeared on television shows, played nearly all major jazz festivals and toured across the United States and abroad. In conjunction with the Airmen of Note (Air Force) and the Army Blues (Army), the Commodores even host their own annual jazz festival, the Joint Service Jazz Festival in Washington, D.C. A versatile and innovative 21st-century ensemble, the Commodores write and arrange much of their vast library of music. Their concerts are an eclectic mix of traditional big band music, exciting jazz vocal arrangements, and fresh new instrumental music written by members of the band. This vibrant, dynamic musical group is constantly striving for musical excellence and the pursuit of new and exciting ways to communicate with their audiences.

The United States Navy Band Commodores

Conductor's Bio

Senior Chief Musician William Mulligan, a native of Columbus, Ohio, joined the Navy Band in 1997. He is the Commodores' unit leader, master of ceremonies and alto saxophone instrumentalist. Mulligan has performed with the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, the Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra, the Columbus Jazz Orchestra, Columbus Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Richmond Symphony Orchestra, the National Philharmonic Orchestra, and was a featured soloist with the Master Chorale of Washington in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. He has had the pleasure of performing with such luminaries as Ella Fitzgerald, Nancy Wilson, Henry Mancini, Doc Severinson, Stanley Turrentine, Joe Lovano, Phil Woods, John Clayton, Johnny Mathis, Maurice Hines, Bernadette Peters, Barry Manilow, the Four Tops, the Temptations, Idina Menzel, Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga. He appeared on an episode of The West Wing with the Radio King Orchestra, and can be heard on the soundtrack to the PBS special Heart & Soul, the Life and Music of Frank Loesser. Prior to joining the Navy Band, he was a saxophone and clarinet soloist for three European tours of Duke Ellington's Sophisticated Ladies, and traveled to six continents as a musical director for Princess Cruises. He attended The Ohio State University School of Music as a National Merit Scholar, earning a Bachelor of Music, summa cum laude, in 1987. His teachers included Vince Andrews, James Hill, James Pyne, Katherine Borst-Jones, and Hank Marr. While studying at Ohio State, he was selected from a nationwide audition search to perform as lead alto saxophonist with the Walt Disney World All-American College Band. Mulligan has served as the Commodores' librarian, leading petty officer, leading Chief Musician, command woodwind section supply manager, and command assessment team enlisted head. He is also a command financial specialist. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his family, and is an avid bicyclist and scuba diver.