Guest Artists

Michael Rodriguez


Grammy Nominated Trumpeter/Composer Michael Rodriguez was born on July 14,1979 in Queens, New York. At the age of 8 Michaels Family moved to Miami where he began studying classical guitar. With much encouragement from his family he then began to play the trumpet in middle school and was later accepted at the prestigious New World School of the Arts to study trumpet and Guitar. He continued his studies with a full Scholarship to the University of Miami. After completing two years at U.M he decided to transfer to the New School University in New York where he received his B.A.

Michael has performed/Traveled/recorded with pianist Eric Reed, Clark Terry, Bobby Watson, Quincy Jones, Joe Lovano Toshiko Akiyoshi Orchestra, Chico O'farill Orchestra, Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Pop Icon Jessica Simpson, Aretha Franklyn, Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, Carla Bley band, Harry Conick Jr., Eddie Palmieri Septet, Lincoln Center Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra, Richard Bona, Smithsonian Jazz Orchestra, Bob Minzter, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Kenny Barron, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Charlie Haden, Liberation Music Orchestra, Paquito D’Rivera, Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra.

Michael Co-leads a group with his brother, pianist Robert Rodriguez, and have 4 recordings as the Rodriguez Brothers with the most recent entitled “Impromptu” receiving a Grammy Nomination in 2015. In 2012, Michael’s solo debut recording “Reverence” was released.

Michael is currently faculty at NYU and travels around the globe as a clinician.

Michael will be playing with the BGSU Lab Bands 1 and 2 on Tuesday, September 26 at 8:00 PM. Located in Kobacker Hall in the Moore Musical Arts Center.  Michael will also be at Bar 149 on Wednesday, September 27 for jazz night starting at 8:30 PM.

Maria Schneider


Maria Schneider’s music has been hailed by critics as “evocative, majestic, magical, heart-stoppingly gorgeous, and beyond categorization.”  She and her orchestra became widely known starting in 1994 when they released their first recording, Evanescence.  There, Schneider began to develop her personal way of writing for what would become her 18-member collective, made up of many of the finest musicians in jazz today, tailoring her compositions to distinctly highlight the uniquely creative voices of the group.  The Maria Schneider Orchestra has performed at festivals and concert halls worldwide.  She herself has received numerous commissions and guest-conducting invites, working with over 85 groups from over 30 countries.

Schneider’s music blurs the lines between genres, making her long list of commissioners quite varied, stretching from Jazz at Lincoln Center, to The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, to collaborating with David Bowie.  She is among a small few to have received GRAMMYS in multiple genres, have received the award in both jazz and classical categories, as well as for her work with David Bowie.

Schneider and her orchestra have a distinguished recording career with twelve GRAMMY nominations and five GRAMMY awards.  Unique funding of projects has become a hallmark for Schneider through the trend-setting company, ArtistShare.  Her album, Concert in the Garden (2004) became historic as the first recording to win a GRAMMY with Internet-only sales, even more significantly, it blazed the "crowd-funding" trail as ArtistShare’s first release. She’s been awarded many honors by the Jazz Journalists Association and DOWNBEAT and JAZZTIMES Critics and Readers Polls.  In 2012, her alma mater, the University of Minnesota, presented Schneider with an honorary doctorate, and in 2014, ASCAP awarded her their esteemed Concert Music Award. 

Schneider has become a strong voice for music advocacy and in 2014, testified before the US Congressional Subcommittee on Intellectual Property about digital rights.  She has also appeared in CNN, and has been quoted in numerous publications for her views on Spotify, Pandora, digital rights and music piracy.  Most recently, she and concerned colleagues in New York have launched a widespread campaign on behalf of music-makers,  

Her recent collaboration with her orchestra and David Bowie resulted in his single called, "Sue (Or In A Season of Crime),” and brought her a 2016 GRAMMY (Best Arrangement, Instruments and Vocals).  Schneider and her orchestra also received a 2016 GRAMMY for their latest work, The Thompson Fields (Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album).

Schneider will be conducting Lab Band 1 on Friday, March 30th at 8:00 PM.  Located in Kobacker Hall in the Moore Musical Arts Center.

 Miguel Zenón


Multiple Grammy Nominee and Guggenheim and MacArthur Fellow Miguel Zenón represents a select group of musicians who have masterfully balanced and blended the often contradictory poles of innovation and tradition. Widely considered as one of the most groundbreaking and influential saxophonists of his generation, he has also developed a unique voice as a composer and as a conceptualist, concentrating his efforts on perfecting a fine mix between Latin American Folkloric Music and Jazz.

Born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Zenón has released ten recordings as a leader, including Típico (2017) and the Grammy Nominated Identitites Are Changeable (2014). As a sideman he has worked with jazz luminaries such as The SFJAZZ Collective, Charlie Haden, Fred Hersch, Kenny Werner, David Sánchez, Danilo Perez, The Village Vanguard Orchestra, Guillermo Klein & Los Guachos, The Jeff Ballard Trio, Antonio Sanchez, David Gilmore, Paoli Mejias, Brian Lynch, Jason Lindner, Miles Okazaki, Ray Barreto, Andy Montañez, Jerry Gonzalez & The Fort Apache Band, The Mingus Big Band, Bobby Hutcherson and Steve Coleman.

Zenón has been featured in articles on publications such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, as well as gracing the cover of Downbeat Magazine on two occasions (2010 and 2014). In addition, he topped both the Jazz Artist of the Year and Alto Saxophonist categories on the 2104 Jazz Times Critics Poll and was selected as 2015 Alto Saxophonist of the Year by the Jazz Journalist Association.

As a composer he has been commissioned by SFJAZZ, The New York State Council for the Arts, Chamber Music America, Logan Center for The Arts, The Hyde Park Jazz Festival, The John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, Jazz Reach, Peak Performances, PRISM Quartet and many of his peers. Zenón has given hundreds of lectures and master classes at institutions all over the world, and is a permanent faculty member at New England Conservatory of Music. In 2011 he founded Caravana Cultural, a program which presents free-of-charge Jazz concerts in rural areas of Puerto Rico. In April 2008 Zenón received a fellowship from the prestigious John Simon Guggenheim Foundation. Later that year he was one of 25 distinguished individuals chosen to receive the coveted MacArthur Fellowship, also known as the “Genius Grant”.

Zenón will be playing at Jazz Night at Bar 149 on January 24.  He will also be joining the Lab Band 1 as a guest artist on January 25, in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center.