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Pianist Willis Delony will perform at New Mexico State University

Acclaimed pianist Willis Delony will perform a combination jazz and classical recital at the New Mexico State University Music Center Recital Hall at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 19.



Willis Delony will perform at the New Mexico State University Music Center Recital Hall at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 19. (Photo by Jim Zietz)

The classical works will include Sonata No. 2 by Dello Joio and Chopin's "Polonaise-Fantasy," "Andante Spianato" and "Grande Polonaise," while the jazz section will feature Delony's arrangement of "Afternoon in Paris" and a movement from a jazz dance suite by David Baker. Virtuoso tubist Jim Shearer will join Delony for a tuba/piano finale, including "Manhattan Hoedown."

"Dr. Delony's ability to move seamlessly from Mozart to Prokofieff to jazz and back again in a rare gift," Shearer said. "It is a great honor to perform with him. He is one of the teachers who inspired me to become more involved in jazz. For me, it is my playing career coming full circle."

Delony has appeared as a soloist and conductor with orchestras nationally and abroad, earning national and international acclaim as a jazz and classical pianist, conductor, chamber player, commercial composer and arranger. His international solo appearances have included recitals in France, Germany, Switzerland, Mexico and the former Soviet Union.

Recently, his concerts have been showcased in a recording of music by American composers titled "Double Dance-Classical and Jazz Connections," released by Centaur Records and "Double Dance-Classical and Jazz Connections II" released in 2008.

Delony is a professor of keyboard studies and of jazz studies at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. He is past recipient of an Artist Fellowship awarded by the Louisiana Division of the Arts in recognition of his achievements in classical and jazz performance.

Tickets may be purchased at the Pan American Center ticket office, all Ticketmaster outlets or at the door. The cost is $8 for general admission and $5 for students and seniors.

For more information call (575) 646-1420 or visit http://panam.nmsu.edu.