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John Vanore and Abstract Truth to Perform at Widener University

John Vanore and Abstract Truth, a Philadelphia-based jazz ensemble, will take the stage at Widener University for a free concert at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 21 in Alumni Auditorium.

Vanore, a Springfield, Pa. resident and a 1969 Widener graduate, is director of music at the university. A veteran of jazz giant Woody Herman's band, Vanore was also a mainstay in the trumpet sections for music artists visiting Philadelphia including Tony Bennett, Mel Torme, Sammy Davis and Michel LeGrand. He has also produced music for EMI, Atlantic and others.
The free concert comes just a month after the release of the band's fourth recording, Culture. The band's latest creation further defines the singular voice of a large, contemporary jazz ensemble that is redefining the big band. Culture presents this uniquely instrumented ensemble's original point of view where the solo voice is prominent, if not dominant. The ensemble draws on the traditions of the big band, but is neither limited by nor imitates it. Culture will be available to the public on March 1 through, iTunes, and at

In Abstract Truth, Vanore has created a unique ensemble, merging the intimacy and unique voice of the soloist with the power of the big band. The music is story-life and thematic—soloists are many and original composition creates their landscape. Formed in the 1980s, the band first two releases, Blue Route and Curiosity, were recognized in the Downbeat reader's poll as Album of the Year worthy. After a long hiatus, the ensemble reformed in 2009 around five of its veteran members. Contagious Words was the first product of the new ensemble and strongly established the group's return with frequent national and international radio plays and reviews.

In addition to Vanore, Abstract Truth consists of George Barnett, Joe Cataldo, Bob Howell, Greg Kettinger, Sean McAnally, Barry McCommon, Michael Mee, Dan Monaghan, Kevin Rodgers, Craig Thomas and Larry Toft and Dennis Wasko. They will perform selections from Culture in addition to their first three releases, Blue Route, Curiosity and Contagious Words. Four of the band's members, Howell, Kettinger, Monaghan and Rodgers, are adjunct music instructors at Widener.

Alumni Auditorium is located off of 14th and Walnut Streets in Chester. Please visit for directions to campus.

Widener University is a private, metropolitan university that connects curricula to social issues through civic engagement. Dynamic teaching, active scholarship, personal attention, experiential learning and leadership development are key components of the Widener experience. A comprehensive doctorate-granting university, Widener comprises eight schools and colleges that offer liberal arts and sciences, professional and pre-professional curricula leading to associate's, baccalaureate, master's and doctoral degrees. The university's campuses in Chester, Exton, and Harrisburg, Pa., and Wilmington, Del., serve some 6,500 students. Visit the university website,