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Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival

Department of Music

Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival text with close up of jazz instrument



47th Annual Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival

March 22-23, 2019

It is my pleasure to announce that the 47th annual Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival will be held on the UMD campus, Friday and Saturday, March 22nd and 23rd, 2019. This Festival will be non-competitive in nature, offering positive, learning-based experiences for young jazz ensembles and many outstanding performances.   –Ryan Frane

Register HERE

2019 Information

Jon Cowherd Trio concert featuring;
Jon Cowherd - piano, Brian Blade - drums, Joe Martin - bass
Friday, March 22nd, 7:30, Weber Music Hall, Adult Tickets - $20.00, Student Tickets - $10.00
Although "Mercy" is Jon Cowherd's first album under his own name, the esteemed pianist/composer/arranger/producer is already firmly established as one of the jazz world's most accomplished, expressive and in-demand young musicians.  The Kentucky raised, New Orleans-schooled, New York-based Cowherd is best known for his long-running partnership with drummer/band leader, Brian Blade, with whom he co-founded the Brian Blade Fellowship, whose acclaimed, influential albums showcase Cowherd's stellar keyboard work and singular composing skills.  When not recording and touring with the Fellowship, Cowherd has worked extensively with a broad array of players and singers from the jazz, pop and rock worlds.

Jon Cowherd Website

Andre Hayward with UMD Jazz I and the Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival All-Stars
Saturday, March 23rd, 5:30, Marshall Performing Arts Center, Adult Tickets - $20.00, Student Tickets - $10.00
Andre is an extremely gifted trombonist with the sound and clarity reminiscent of the late J.J. Johnson.  His gospel-tinged approach is refreshing and will warm the hearts of anyone he comes in contact with.
Born in Houston, Texas in 1973, Hayward's first exposure to the world of music was through his parents, Melvin and Barbara Hayward where musical talent exists on both sides.  Hayward began playing trombone and tuba at the age of 11 under the tutelage of Leon Schreiber and 2 years later with Bob Odneal who was lead trumpeter for Maynard Ferguson.  Hayward continued playing through high school where he attended the High School for Performing and Visual Arts under the direction of notable jazz educator, Robert "Doc" Morgan.  He continued to hone his skills with Houston's legendary educator, Conrad O. Johnson.  It was Conrad's instruction and the opportunity to work in his big band, "The Big Blue Sound", where Hayward really started to gain experience working in an ensemble.
The Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival will also include:
  • Performances by UMD Jazz Ensembles
  • 40 minutes of individualized time for your ensemble: Most ensembles perform for about twenty minutes and are then critiqued by two clinicians for another twenty minutes.
  • Adjudicators: Including leading jazz educators from colleges across the country to adjudicate and clinic your ensembles and directors
  • Non-competitive atmosphere: This positive, learning-oriented approach has become a hallmark of the Head of the Lakes Festival. No trophies or defeats, just jazz music, hard work, and fun!
  • Clinics: Numerous clinics will be given by the guest artists, UMD jazz faculty and by our adjudicators, all of whom are recognized leaders in their fields.
  • Scholarships: The chance for instrumentalists to audition for a scholarship to attend the University of Minnesota Duluth as a music major!!
  • Prizes: Performance certificates and prizes will be awarded to individuals who offer outstanding performances during the day.

Please register for the festival online by the March 8th deadline so that we can hold a spot for your ensemble(s) at this year’s festival. The fee for participants will be $200.00 per ensemble. We will fill performance spots on a first come, first serve basis so get your reservation form in early. Upon receipt of your registration fee, we will contact you regarding payment, group hotel rates and other information.

I look forward to seeing you this year, and to hearing your ensembles perform. If you have any questions regarding the festival, please feel free to contact me at 218.726.6327, or by email at     Ryan