Concert is a mix of jazz and politics-Campus Time, University of La Verne

Israeli-born Gilad Atzmon, a political activist known for his views on Israel and Palestine, played a jazz concert on Tuesday in Morgan Auditorium. The concert was originally planned for Atzmon to play solo, but he invited adjunct professor of music Gayle Serdan to join him. / photo by Katherine Carega

Veronica Orozco
Staff Writer

Jazz musician and writer Gilad Atzmon played an energetic and exciting concert in Tuesday night’s performance in Morgan Auditorium.

The night started off with an introduction by professor of English William Cook where he described Atzmon as a rare person whose mind never stops working, along with reading an excerpt from Atzmon’s most recent book “The Wandering Who.”

As Atzmon walked on stage to greet the audience he began by giving a small description of his Middle Eastern inspired music.

He then followed it with a small demonstration of what the difference is between the styles and types of jazz.

“When it comes to Arabic on a saxophone it is basically a nightmare, the notes linger on for days just oscillating,” Atzmon said.

Atzmon said he fell in love with the sound of jazz at age 17 and believed he would be able to attract girls’ attention with his sax.

Since Atzmon could not read music he took up the saxophone because he said it is an instrument that is more about feeling the music rather than reading it.

“The biggest problem we have in our liberal technological society is that we are not listening, we are deaf to the pain of other people,” Atzmon said.

He then introduced adjunct professor of music Gayle Serden who accompanied him on piano.

Serden and Atzmon had just met 15 minutes prior, which made the improve between the musicians imperative.

There was a brief pause as they discussed what song they would play first and the room was soon filled with lively music.

The saxophone and piano had a give-and-take that created a bond between the musicians and was translated to the audience.

Atzmon’s body began to move to the beat starting with the tapping of his foot and moving up to the swaying of his body.

He looked as if he was dancing a waltz and he used his saxophone as his partner.

Atzmon stood on the edge of the stage as he played.

He was so enwrapped in the music that it often looked as if he was about to jump right off of the stage.

After he finished his performance he said that he plays with his two feet lingering on the edge because jazz is all about taking risks and he loves taking risks.

After every song there would be a pause where the musicians would decide what song would be played next.

Typically such a sign of disorganization would inhibit the connection between the two performers.

However, this was not the case for Atzmon and Serdan.

“My favorite part was knowing that neither of them had rehearsed before they performed,” Jessica Alberts, sophomore English and creative major, said. “They listened to each other and knew exactly what the other was about to do.”

“It was rough around the edges at some points but it flowed well together in such a free formed and impromptu style,” Kristina Jones, junior English major said.