A master of the saxophone and esteemed teacher of performance on woodwinds, Bill Pierce will offer an open workshop on Oct. 30 to a Harvard jazz ensemble of student musicians and then will be in conversation with Ingrid Monson of the Harvard Music Department. Presented by the Office for the Arts Learning from Performers program 4 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 30 at Leverett House Library Theater, 11 Mill St. (between Plympton & DeWolfe Streets), this free public event is part of a residency that culminates in a ticketed concert at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3 at Lowell Lecture Hall, featuring Pierce and Harvard Jazz Bands, led by Yosvany Terry and Mark Olson.
The Harvard jazz ensemble for the Oct. 30 event will include the following students:
Ethan Kripke ’20 is from Radnor, Pennsylvania, and lives in Kirkland House. At Harvard, he is studying computer science and plays the drums in the Harvard Jazz Band, as well as in the Hasty Pudding Theatricals, where he is vice president and bandleader. He has additionally played in many other groups at Harvard, both official and informal, ranging from jazz combos to disco bands.
Sam Lurye ’20 lives in Leverett House, is from New York City and is studying computer science. He plays alto saxophone in the Harvard Jazz Band and recently joined the Hasty Pudding Theatricals as a saxophonist. In high school, he attended the Manhattan School of Music Precollege Jazz Program and played alto saxophone in the Jazz at Lincoln Center Youth Orchestra.
John Miller ’19 plays tenor saxophone and lives in Currier House. He is studying statistics and plays with Harvard's Monday Night Jazz Band directed by Yosvany Terry, sings in the Harvard Glee Club and regularly performs at various university events and private functions.
Jazz pianist Matthew Shaw '20 is from Simsbury, Connecticut, and is concentrating in history and science. During his first year at Harvard, he was pianist for the Dudley Jazz Band, and he has been a member of the Harvard Jazz Band since 2017. He has additionally participated in the Harvard Jazz Combo Initiative, and is a frequent performer on campus, playing many gigs as a soloist or member of a small group.
Guitarist Evan Vietorisz ’20 lives in Quincy House and is from Stamford, Connecticut. He is studying physics at Harvard and jazz performance at the New England Conservatory, as part of Harvard’s dual degree program. He plays in combos at both institutions, participates in Harvard's big band and gigs locally. Through an Artist Development Fellowship from the Harvard Office for the Arts, Vietorisz participated in jazz festivals and workshops at the Conservatory of Amsterdam, the Siena Jazz Academy in Siena, Italy, and the School of Improvised music in Brooklyn, New York. Read about his experience on the Harvard Arts Blog.
Raised in Florida, Bill Pierce has performed and recorded with Freddie Hubbard, Tony Williams, Art Farmer, James Williams, Hank Jones, Art Blakey, Branford Marsalis and Wynton Marsalis. He is the former woodwind department chair at Berklee College of Music, where he landed at age 18 during the late 1960s, studying jazz during the day and gigging at night. For two years, he played steadily at the Sugar Shack, a now defunct club on Boylston Street opposite the Boston Common where all of the top R&B acts used to play. He interrupted his studies to tour with Stevie Wonder, and then returned to Berklee, graduated and became part of the faculty in 1975. He wasrecently celebrated at Berklee with a concert produced by drummer, composer and bandleader (and fellow Berklee alum and educator) Terri Lyne Carrington.
Listen to Pierce perform at the Cambridge Jazz Festival in 2016.
Listen to Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers Live at Seventh Avenue South (1982) with Art Blakey (drums); Wynton Marsalis (trumpet); Branford Marsalis (alto sax); Bill Pierce (tenor sax); Donald Brown (piano); Charles Fambrough (bass).