Accomplished trumpeter and composer Benje Daneman performed with the Benje Daneman Quartet at Concordia as part of the Jones Fine Art Series at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20, in the Weller Hall auditorium. The concert was open to the public and free of charge.
Daneman, along with pianist Robert Clearfield, drummer Christian Euman and bassist Sam Weber, performed original jazz hits composed by Daneman, as well as several jazz classics including, "My Funny Valentine."
After a brief intermission, the quartet was joined on stage by the University Jazz Ensemble. Together the groups played three jazz songs, including "Big John's Special" by Horace Henderson and arranged by David Berger, "Estelle's Farewell Gift" by Benje Daneman and "A Few Good Men" by Gordon Goodwin.
A reception followed the performance.
In conjunction with the concert, Daneman led a master class for Concordia students and high school musicians from surrounding areas. Daneman and his three-part accompanying jazz ensemble tour the Midwest, playing concerts and working with student musicians.
Daneman attended Western Michigan University and the Henry Mancini Institute in Los Angeles before joining the ranks of New York City jazz musicians, performing throughout the New York metropolitan area. He completed work on a master’s degree in jazz trumpet at the Manhattan School of Music and has since toured with renowned trumpeter Doc Severinsen. Daneman placed as a finalist in the National Trumpet Competition and recorded the Grammy-nominated album, Elevation, with the Henry Mancini Institute Big Band.
As a composer and arranger, Daneman has received commissions from the United States Air Force Band in Europe, Spark and Echo Arts and Centerpoint Church in Kalamazoo, Mich., where he lives with his wife, jazz singer-songwriter Ashley Daneman, and their two daughters.
The Jones Fine Art Series is made possible by Jones National Bank and Trust Company and is meant to enhance the music, theater and art experiences available to Concordia University and the Seward community.