Specific tracks played by CSUSB’s Jazz ensemble resembled a classic James Bond film during a fast action chase scene, exciting and riveting. Other songs were very smooth and soothing, then sudden bursts of absurdity.
CSUSB’s Santos Manuel Student Union hosted “Caliente! Salsa & Latin Jazz Night” Feb.11, bringing a spicy taste of Latin culture for students and San Bernardino residents alike.
Prior to the actual Latin Jazz Ensemble performance was a dance class lead by voluntary instructor Robyn Fernandez who teaches free salsa and swing classes every quarter at CSUSB.
The instructional dance course had a total of nine partner groups. Fernandez walked students through an introductory course in salsa dancing with a few quick steps (forward and backward) and then a simple turn.
Volunteers would change partners in a counterclockwise pattern so that everyone had a chance to dance with each other regardless of experience, Fernandez included.
After an hour of preliminary salsa dancing to background Latin jazz, CSUSB’s Jazz ensemble took the stage. The jazz ensemble was made up of both undergraduate students and teachers and is open to all musicians regardless of their major.
This fast paced band has played numerous regional events including the Western States Jazz Festival, Reno Jazz Festival, and the Oceanside Jazz Festival. They also perform annually in both CSUSB’s Swing Night and Jazzfest.
The band was filled with an array of instruments including the trombone, trumpet, saxophone, clarinet, drums, bass, guitar, bongos, keyboard, and shaker.