David Esleck playing piano

David Esleck Trio


Sep 05
7:30 PM
Camp Concert Hall, Modlin Center for the Arts
Free, Tickets Required

The award-winning David Esleck Trio offers an evening of piano jazz. This concert will feature the music of George and Ira Gershwin, in recognition of the 100th anniversary of George’s landmark composition Rhapsody in Blue.

Dr. David Esleck: Performer, Composer, Producer, Educator. Although experienced as a multi-instrumentalist, he focuses on the piano as a soloist and with the David Esleck Trio. He is heard in concerts and recitals around the country, including performances for and with Presidents, heads of state, CEOs, Hollywood stars, and musical figures like The Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Tony Bennett. His latest release, on Yesyes Records, “Little Ears,” was listed on the ballot for the GRAMMY awards, and is available on Amazon.com, Pandora, and Spotify.

Esleck’s jazz and classical compositions are heard in concerts, films, and television. A trained composer, Esleck holds Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral degrees in the discipline from Tennessee Technological University, The University of Virginia, and The Catholic University of America, where his teachers have included Robert Jager, Aaron Copland, Walter Ross, Judith Shatin, and Helmut Braünlich. Jazz bands, children’s choirs, orchestras, and soloists have performed Eslecks’ music, as well as being heard in films and television programs.

The variety of styles and genres in Eslecks’ compositions is also reflected in the diversity of artists with whom he has done production work. Esleck has served as a record producer for a wide variety of clients, working with twenty-first-century composers, classical performers, Nashville singers, and rock artists.

Esleck’s dedication to the art of music is equal to his commitment to music education. He is on the faculty at the University of Richmond, where he teaches jazz performance, jazz history, and jazz piano, in addition to courses in the more traditional fields of music history, theory, and piano performance. Before coming to UR, he was head of the jazz/ commercial music program at Virginia Union University and also taught at the University of Virginia, Longwood University, and Randolph-Macon University. In addition to the great rewards of academia, Esleck still finds time to work with students of all ages, from young children to seniors. He has an active studio of private students, and recent graduates are playing and singing at the Berklee School of Music, Belmont University, Indiana University, The University of Miami, The University of Michigan, and on stages and in studios around the world.

Jason Jenkins, bass, is a graduate of Hampton University in Hampton, VA. A “Downbeat Magazine” award winner, he appears both as a sideman and with his group, The Jason Jenkins Quartet. Jason’s latest recording with that group, “Aphelion,” is currently in release.

Keith Willingham is a gifted and sought-after musician on trumpet and drums. His studies at James Madison and Virginia Union Universities prepared him for the first-call status he now enjoys. Keith is a frequent performer at jazz venues around the East Coast and has appeared with the Temptations, Martha Reeves, and the First Impressions.

This concert is offered as part of the Department of Music Free Concert Series 2024-2025 Season. The Department of Music produces over 25 concerts annually featuring a broad range of styles and genres. Enjoy student recitals, faculty ensemble performances, and concerts created in collaboration with visiting artists. All concerts are FREE and seating is general admission. Tickets are required, and all will be welcomed as space allows.