Jazz and chamber music concert slated for Noon Tunes

An elite group of chamber musicians will perform a program of jazz and classical music inspired by landscapes at Pitt-Bradford next week.

The performance, which is part of the Noon Tunes series, will take place at noon, Feb. 12, in the Studio Theater of Blaisdell Hall. It is free and open to the public, and refreshments will be served.

Featured on the program will be pianists Alex Peh and Vinnie Martucci, jazz guitarist Mark Dziuba, and violist Christiana Fortune-Reader. The group will perform works written especially for the program inspired by the sights and sounds of natural landscapes.

“This is a phenomenal group of improvisers and performers,” said Josh Groffman, assistant professor of music at Pitt-Bradford. Groffman coordinated the performance, and he will join the group onstage for several numbers. “Vinnie, Mark, Alex, and Christiana bring joy, humor, and total commitment to their performance. They're a blast to see perform.”

Vinnie Martucci has had an exciting and diverse career as a performer, composer, arranger, producer, and educator. He has toured extensively on the international stage as co-leader of the Jazz Fusion Quartet The Dolphins with Dan Brubeck, as arranger and accompanist for Laurel Masse of Manhattan Transfer, and as arranger and performer for blues artist Rory Block. 

Mark Dziuba has been a guitarist, improviser and composer for most of his life. He has performed with a Who's Who of jazz, blues, rock and bluegrass musicians internationally and has taught and performed at workshops for over 40 years. Mark is a tenured professor at State University of New York New Paltz, where he directs the Jazz Studies program. 

Peh, originally from New York, has extensive experience as both a musician and educator. He received a degree from Northwestern University and has performed for audiences at the Carnegie Weil Recital Hall in New York City, the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., the Austrian Embassy in Washington and the Byzantine Museum in Thessaloniki, Greece. His complex style and wide range of musical talents has allowed him to work internationally with other respected musicians such as Ignat Solzhenitsyn, Phyllis Chen, Paul Lewis and Pamela Frank.

Similarly, Fortune-Reader's musical abilities have laid the foundation for her careers as a musician and educator. The Kansas native has earned numerous degrees from the Eastman School of Music, the University of Southern California, and the Cleveland Institute of Music. During the completion of her degrees, Reader worked with influencers Donald McInnes, Jeffery Irvine, Lynne Ramsey and Carol Rodland.