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Luther College Jazz Orchestra Bio
Whether they’re swinging to the tunes of Duke Ellington and Count Basie, making a Brazilian samba come alive, or simply laying down a heavy funk groove, the musicians of the “Superband” (as director Dr. Juan Tony Guzmán calls the ensemble) are guaranteed to make any space alive with musical energy.
As one of Luther College’s four major touring ensembles, the Jazz Orchestra travels annually and tours abroad every four years—most recently in May/June 2016 for a three-week, 13-performance immersion in the musical cultures of Rio de Janeiro and the northeastern states of Paraíba, Pernambuco, and Rio Grande do Norte. The ensemble also traveled to Brazil in 2012 and 2008, and toured the Dominican Republic in 2000 and 2004.
In addition to regular performances on the Luther College campus, the Jazz Orchestra has been featured at the Iowa Jazz Championships and Iowa Bandmasters Association Conference.
Jazz Orchestra has recorded three albums: Aquarela (2013), Transformations (2011) and On the Move (2003).
Juan Tony Guzmán
A conductor, composer, arranger, and music educator from the Dominican Republic, Juan Tony Guzmán is currently director of the jazz program and professor of music at Luther College.
Guzmán is a sought-after conductor of all-state and honor choirs, concert bands, jazz bands, and symphony orchestras across the United States and frequently serves as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator at festivals across North America, Central and South America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. He has recently done clinics and presentations for the Dominican Republic National System of Youth Orchestras, the World Choral Symposium, the Music Educators National Conference, Associação de Regentes de Corais do Brasil, The Association of British Choral Directors, the Scottish Association for Music Education, and the Festival 500 in Canada.
An active arranger, Guzmán is known for his arrangements of Caribbean and Latin American music, some of which are published by Boosey & Hawkes and Oxford University Press.
Guzmán holds a Ph.D. in music education, a certificate in pedagogy of music theory, and a master's degree in music education from Florida State University. He has a bachelor of arts in music education from Luther College and a degree in electromechanical engineering from the Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra in Santiago, Dominican Republic.