UNT's College of Music's One O'Clock Lab Band will tour major European jazz festivals this July as longtime band director Neil Slater conducts his final concerts before his retirement.
Slater plans to retire from UNT in August, after 27 years of leading the One O'Clock Lab Band and the jazz studies program as only the third director in the program's 61-year history.
The Grammy-nominated band's European tour includes the prominent Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, as well as other prestigious festivals.
"I have been amazed and pleased at the band's consistency from year to year," Slater says. "They play at an amazing level, and that speaks to the high level of musicianship of the students, and of course, the outstanding faculty I've worked with over the years."
About Neil Slater
Slater joined the UNT College of Music in 1981, making him the third director of the One O'Clock Lab Band in the jazz program's 61-year history. A professor of music at UNT and chair of the jazz studies division at UNT, he has created compositions for jazz ensembles, symphony, mixed chamber groups, a cappella chorus and theater.
Slater, a Grammy nominee, has been recognized by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) each year since 1987. A pianist and former member of the Stan Kenton Orchestra-In-Residence program, he has recorded and performed with such artists as Frank Strozier, Dave Weckl, Mel Lewis, Lew Anderson, Sal Salvadore and Joe Morello. Before joining UNT, Slater founded the jazz studies program and established master's and bachelor's degree programs in jazz at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. He plans to retire from UNT in August.
About UNT One O'Clock Lab Band
The Grammy-nominated UNT One O'Clock Lab Band is the premiere ensemble of UNT's jazz studies program in the College of Music. The band has performed and toured throughout the world, including Australia, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Switzerland, Thailand and the Netherlands.
UNT offered the nation's first bachelor's degree program in jazz studies in 1947, and the university's graduate jazz studies program is consistently rated among the nation's best.
UNT News Service Press Release
Ellen Rossetti can be reached at email@example.com.