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To celebrate Dana School of Music's 150th anniversary, YSU jazz greats hold concert

Each of the five musicians graduated from the Dana School of Music at YSU

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) - On Sunday afternoon in the Ford Family Recital Hall of the DeYor Performing Arts Center, a Jazz All Stars concert will be held that features five of the best jazz musicians in the country.

But playing in this concert is not the only thing the musicians have in common -- they all graduated from Youngstown State University's Dana School of Music.

The concert is the first of many events to celebrate Dana's 150th anniversary.

Youngstown's Bill Bodine and Brookfield's Phil Palombi -- one of the musicians playing on Sunday -- held a jam session Thursday afternoon.

Bodine, who also graduated from Dana, came up with the idea for the Jazz All Stars concert.

He says getting Palombi on board with the event was simple.

"Oh yeah, I didn't even think about it. I'm subbing out of stuff to be here, it's that important. You know, it's funny, in a way, Bill kind of changed my life because if Bill hadn't drug Tony into teaching, I don't know what I'd be doing," Palombi said.

The concert begins at 2 p.m. and all proceeds will go to the Tony Leonardi Scholarship Fund.

"When I was in school in '69, they didn't have a jazz program. But, another trumpet player and I started a renegade program, a jazz band," Bodine said.

That jazz band later led to a jazz studies program at Dana under the direction of the late Tony Leonardi.

"They had Tony Leonardi, which he became more than a teacher. He was a mentor and I would say even a second father in some ways for somebody starting out," Palombi said.

Palombi, a bassist, will join four others at the concert -- Youngstown native James Weidman on the piano, another Youngtown native Daryll Pellegrini on the drums, Aliquippa native Ralph Lalama on the saxophone and Warren native Sean Jones on the trumpet.

"I can say these guys are becoming jazz giants. They have stellar jazz careers," Bodine said.

All the $50 seats are gone but there are still $35 and $25 ones. It's $10 for students.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit DeYor's website or call them at 330-744-0264.

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