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Flutist Burdette Becks to be featured in Spring Jazz at the Culp

Burdette Becks

JOHNSON CITY (April 15, 2013) – Call the musician a “flutist,” “fluter” or “flute-player,” but please, don’t call him a “flautist!”

In her book, The Flute, Nancy Toff notes that the term “flautist” has connotations derived from the verb “flaut,” which means to jeer or mock and which “apparently derives its meaning from the practice of playing a flute to ridicule.”

“Flauting the Flutist” is the theme of this year’s Spring Jazz at the Culp on Friday, May 3, when jazz flutist Burdette Becks will be the featured guest artist.  He will perform on stage with the ETSU Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Combo in this concert, which begins at 7:30 p.m. in the D.P. Culp University Center’s Martha Street Culp Auditorium.

Becks is an internationally renowned flutist and vocalist whose career includes over 20 years in the U.S. Air Force Band and many years touring Europe.  In the military, he performed with classical woodwind quintets and show band productions and as a flute, piccolo and vocal soloist.

Becks’ post-military career has been spent primarily in Europe, where he has worked in Berlin with the RIAS Big Band and in Belgium with the Crazy Bol Quartet.

He has appeared with such greats as Bob Hope, Dionne Warwick, Lou Rawls and Wynton Marsalis.  Currently, the alternate Platter sings and plays with the Burdette Becks Quartet, participates in guitarist Roland Gebhardt’s jazz fusion projects, sings with the six-member vocal band Harmony Central, and lends his touch to many requests that come from all over Europe for his talents.

Appearing with Becks will be ETSU’s student Jazz Combo and Jazz Ensemble, directed by Martin Walters and Dr. David Champouillon, respectively.

Led by Champouillon, the ETSU Jazz Program offers courses in large and small jazz ensemble, history of jazz, jazz improvisation and theory, pedagogy, and applied study.  Student musicians in the program perform many different styles of jazz throughout the region, and have appeared at the Mountain Empire Jazz Festival, Tri-Cities Jazz Fest and Virginia Highlands Jazz Fest.  They have also had the opportunity to share the concert stage with such notable artists as Maynard Ferguson, Jon Faddis, Vince DiMartino, Ron Modell, Al Hood, Marvin Stamm, Bill Mays, Rufus Reid, Ed Soph, Vaughn Nark, Pete BarenBregge and Ed Shaughnessy, as well as Lenore Raphael.

Tickets to Spring Jazz at the Culp are $10 for general admission and $5 for students and seniors.

For more information or special assistance for those with disabilities, contact the ETSU Department of Music at (423) 439-4276.