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NMSU's Jazz Outreach Project brings jazz to Las Cruces area

As part of its Jazz Outreach Project, the New Mexico State University Department of Music will present a tour with workshops, clinics and concerts around New Mexico, featuring Mack Avenue recording artist and nationally recognized saxophonist Tia Fuller.

Mack Avenue recording artist Tia Fuller will participate in NMSU's Jazz Outreach Project March 6-11.

"We'll be serving areas of the state that normally don't get this kind of funding to bring such high-quality music," said Allan Kaplan, an NMSU jazz studies professor who came up with the idea for the project.

In the Las Cruces area, Fuller will be the guest speaker at a women studies class at 9 a.m. Tuesday, March 7, in Hardman Hall Room 206 on the NMSU campus. There will be a jazz improvisation clinic at noon at Gadsden High School in Anthony, N.M.

At 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 8, a clinic will be held at Onate High School, 5700 Mesa Grande Drive. Fuller and the NMSU Jazz Nonet will perform at 3:30 p.m. March 8 in the NMSU Music Center Recital Hall.

Fuller will perform again with the NMSU Jazz Nonet at 8 p.m. Friday, March 10, in the NMSU Music Center Recital Hall.

On Saturday, March 11, the recital hall will host a 9 a.m. saxophone clinic followed by an improvisation clinic at 10 a.m.

Fuller will perform with the NMSU Big Band Jazz 1 at 8 p.m. March 11 in the recital hall. Admission for this concert is $4 for students, $6 for seniors and $7 for adults. Tickets will be available at the door.

Kaplan said he started the Jazz Outreach Project hoping to bring the best jazz to high school music students and other residents of New Mexico. He selected Fuller to participate in the project because "she is a great artist who can really work with young people."

Fuller received her bachelor's degree in music from Spelman College in 1998 and her master's in jazz pedagogy and performance from the University of Colorado-Boulder in 2000. She has performed in the Detroit Jazz Festival, Jazz Fest Vien in Vienna, Austria, the Monterey Jazz Festival and the Tony Williams Jazz Festival. She won the 1999 Sisters in Jazz Collegiate Competition and has been featured in Downbeat magazine as an up-and-coming musician.

The free clinics and concerts are funded by a grant from the New Mexico Arts, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information about the project, contact the NMSU music department at (505) 646-2421.