The Oberlin Conservatory Jazz Department celebrates 25 years in 2019. This year also sees the debut of the Oberlin Sonny Rollins Jazz Ensemble. Membership in “The Sonny Ensemble” is awarded through audition to outstanding Oberlin student musicians who, in the tradition of Rollins himself, exhibit exemplary commitment to serving humanity. Tonight’s performance will be the band’s New York debut, featuring original works and arrangements by members of the band. Oberlin alumnus Sullivan Fortner— one of our favorite young musicians and a regular headliner here at Jazz at Lincoln Center—joins as special guest pianist, reminding us of the incredible promise of this next wave of hardworking jazz musicians.