Directed by Dan Gailey
Michael Dease is one of the world’s eminent trombonists, lending his versatile sound and signature improvisations to more than 200 recordings and groups as diverse as Grammy-winning artists David Sanborn, Christian McBride, Michel Camilo and Alicia Keys. Dease was a part of the historic first class of jazz students at the Juilliard School, earning both bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and he quickly established a reputation as a brilliant soloist, side person and bandleader.
Dease recently won the 64th Annual DownBeat Critic’s Poll for Rising Star Jazz Trombonist and the 2017 Best Jazz Trombonist from NYC’s Hot House Magazine. He is a sought-after and three-time Grammy Award-winning lead, section and bass trombonist with today’s leading jazz orchestras, like WDR Big Band, NDR Big Band, Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and the Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band. However, it is on the frontline of quintets and sextets led by master musicians like The Heath Brothers, Winard Harper, Renee Rosnes, Bill Charlap, Claudio Roditi, Lewis Nash and Rodney Whitaker where Dease has revitalized the trombone’s image. Not content to simply improvise, he arranges and composes for many different bands and constantly adjusts his tone and timbre to add just the right flavor to the music. Dease’s unique blend of curiosity, hard work, and optimism, has helped him achieve worldwide recognition, including awards from ASCAP, the International Trombone Association, Eastern Trombone Workshop, New York Youth Symphony and Yamaha, among others.
He will perform with the KU Jazz Ensemble I led by Dan Gailey, director of Jazz Studies. The ensemble has received numerous DownBeat Student Music Awards, including Best College Jazz Ensemble in 2015 and 2019. They have had the distinction of playing at many prestigious jazz festivals and venues, including the Montreux Jazz Festival, Umbria Jazz, Jazz À Vienne Festival, the Kennedy Center and Jazz at Lincoln Center.