January 10, 2008

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LEWISBURG, Pa. — Jazz pianist and composer Steve Rudolph will lead a varied performance on Wednesday, Jan. 30, at 8 p.m. in the Rooke Recital Hall of the Weis Music Building at Bucknell University.

The concert, which is free to the public, is the first event in the spring semester's Janet Weis Cabaret Jazz Series at Bucknell, a series made possible by funding from the Weis family.

Rudolph will perform with guest soloists Ilona Knopfler, vocalist, and Nate Birkey, trumpet and vocals, along with drummer Marko Marcinko and bassist Victor Dvoskin.

Past president and a founder of the Central Pennsylvania Friends of Jazz, the internationally known Steve Rudolph is a Pennsylvanian who regularly performs at the Hilton Harrisburg. Presented as an "Emerging Artist" at the Jazz Times Convention in New York City in 1998 and winner of the 1999 Jazziz Magazine - Seven Springs Jazz Festival Piano Competition, he also received the 2002 Harrisburg Arts Award for service to the community.

Career highlights include seven European tours, appearing as soloist with Miami's New World Symphony and receiving the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Jazz Fellowship in 1995 and 2001. He has appeared in concert with Louie Bellson, Al Grey, Buddy Tate, Clark Terry, Paquito D'Rivera, Herb Ellis, Buddy DeFranco, Terry Gibbs, the Mills Brothers, Buddy Morrow and countless other jazz greats. A Yamaha Performing Artist and a member of the Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour roster, his detailed recording and touring information may be found at http://www.steverudolph.com/

Born in Paris and raised in a musical family (her mother was a singer, her father a pianist and her mother’s accompanist), Ilona Knopfler made her stage debut at the age of 15 in Hong Kong and later became the house favorite at the Jazz Club in Hong Kong. After moving to New York, she studied for five years at the Lee Strasberg Institute. Her most recent recording, "Live the Life," (Mack Avenue Records) on which she sings in both English and French (she’s equally fluent in both) was recorded in both Paris and New York. For more information, visit http://www.ilonaknopfler.com.

A Midwestern native born in Indiana and raised in Colorado, Nate Birkey is essentially a West Coast jazz musician who has been likened to Chet Baker, Miles Davis and Art Farmer. Introduced to the trumpet by his father at age 7, Birkey studied in the Berklee School of Music in Boston, Seattle Pacific University, and the University of California, Santa Barbara. His most recent recordings are "Shortest Day" and "The Mennonite" on Household Ink records. For more information, visit http://www.natebirkey.com/home.htm

Janet's Jazz Series

Other performances in the Janet Weis Cabaret Jazz Series this spring are:

Wednesday, Feb. 27: "Ladies of the Silver Screen," with KT Sullivan, acclaimed jazz vocalist and stage star, and James Followell, music director and pianist;

Wednesday, March 26: legendary jazz guitarists Bucky Pizzarelli and Howard Alden.

All performances begin at 8 p.m. in the Rooke Recital Hall of the Weis Music Building and are open to the public without charge.

Contact: Office of Communications

Posted Jan. 10, 2008