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Golden Age of the Big Band: Music of Benny Goodman and Count Basie to Be Celebrated Feb. 26 at SMCM

Local Singing Legend Sandy Mahoney Will Accompany Band
February 5, 2010
Press Release #10-012

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The St. Mary's College of Maryland (SMCM) Jazz Combo and Big Band, led by director Don Stapleson, will perform selections from music legends Woody Herman, Benny Goodman, Count Basie, and Duke Ellington for the 4th annual Golden Age of the Big Band concert at 8 p.m. Friday, February 26, 2010, in the Auerbach Auditorium of St. Mary's Hall on the college campus. Guest vocalist and local legend Sandy Mahoney will be singing with the combo. This concert is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Audrey Hamilton in the music department at 240-895-4498 or aghamilton@smcm.edu.

Stapleson, an accomplished saxophonist and respected flutist, performs with his own group, the Don Stapleson Quartet, as well as with the popular classical/jazz crossover group, "Allegro con Trio." He has performed with Ray Charles, Dexter Gordon, Nancy Wilson, and Martha Reeves.  Among his other accomplishments, Stapleson has played with the orchestras at Washington, D.C.'s National and Folger theaters.

Stapleson attended the Berklee College of Music and holds degrees from SMCM and the University of Maryland. He teaches saxophone and directs the jazz combo and the jazz ensemble at St. Mary's College.

St. Mary's College of Maryland, designated the Maryland state honors college in 1992, is ranked one of the best liberal arts schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger's, and The Princeton Review. Founded in 1840 as Maryland's "monument school" commemorating the state's first capital, SMCM is the state's only public honors college.

More than 2,000 students attend the college, which has the highest graduation rate for all Maryland public colleges and universities, and an SAT average for student admissions of 1848. The school's waterfront campus along the St. Mary's River in Southern Maryland is home to the 2009 National Intercollegiate Sailing Association Co-ed champions.

Category: Music