JazzThis! is an ensemble based in the Tulsa, OK area dedicated to providing quality musical entertainment for every occasion. The core of Jazz This!, Elizabeth and Carl Curtis, specialize in jazz but can meet your every musical need.
Jazz This! performs original, innovative arrangements of jazz and swing standards as well as Broadway, pop, rock, and some classic country. The musicians in Jazz This! are proficient in all genres of music for your listening and/or dancing enjoyment.
Elizabeth Smith Curtis
Born in Lake Charles, LA (she claims to have a little bit of bayou in her blood) but raised in Houston, Texas, Elizabeth has sung many forms of music. Upon completing a Master's of Music Degree from Rice University, she was the vocalist with a big band for several years. Also while in Texas, she performed with Theater Under the Stars, the Houston Gilbert and Sullivan Society and was a soloist in many classical major works including the Fauré Requiem, the Duruflé Requiem, the Mozart Requiem, Dubois' "The Seven Last Words of Christ," Bach's B Minor Mass, and Bach's Magnificat.
Since moving to Tulsa, she has been seen in numerous shows such as Gondoliers (Tessa), Pirates of Penzance (Edith), Phantom (Carlotta), Barnum (Jenny Lind), Rockwell (Mary Rockwell), and Honky Tonk Angels (Sue Ellen). Elizabeth also worked as the music director for a number of shows including The Fantasticks, Twelfth Night, John Brown's Body, Rockwell, Miracle on 34th Street, I Love You You're Perfect Now Change, Santa's Got a Brand New Bag, My Fair Lady, and as the vocal director for Listen to My Heart. She has had the pleasure of working with Broadway composer David Friedman, Broadway performers John Sawyer and Erick Devine, and international stage personality Sir John Reed, OBE.
When not on stage, she enjoys composing and has written the music and lyrics for eight musicals and a feature length documentary. Elizabeth was the Minister of Music at Harvard Avenue Christian Church for over 6 years where she conducted performances of Mozart's Requiem, Dubois' "The Seven Last Words of Christ," "Amahl and the Night Visitors," Vivaldi’s “Gloria,” and the Christmas section of "The Messiah." After serving there, she was the artistic director for Council Oak Men's Chorale for four years and, following a few years off for good behavior, she returned in July of 2018 to resume her role as Artistic Director. From 2006 to 2014 Elizabeth conducted the Hyechka Chorus, a Tulsa-based women's community chorus, which celebrated its 100th birthday in 2012! She is currently also serving as Music Director for Fellowship Congregational Church.
When not conducting or performing, she maintains a full studio of private students studying piano, voice and guitar. In addition to her vocal skills, Elizabeth plays piano, guitar, bass, and pipe organ. Elizabeth credits her phenomenal teachers Frances Bible, voice, and Sylvia Strong, piano, (both Juilliard grads) and her wonderful husband, Carl Curtis, with helping her to be the musician she is today.
Carl B. Curtis
Born and raised in the Tulsa area, Carl has been performing with many musical groups and musicians across many musical styles and genres including jazz, classical, Broadway shows, pop, celtic music, rock, and country in and around the Tulsa area since 1982.
His collaborations have included Sam Harris, The Oklahoma Sinfonia, The Diamonds, The Four Aces, The Drifters, The Coasters, The Platters, Johnny Desmond, Susan Gray, Tulsa Vintage Jazz Band, The Jim Kirk Orchestra, The Richard Cox Big Band, The Don Linde Big Band as well as performing jazz, standards and a variety of music with his own groups and as a solo performer.
He has played in local performances of national touring musicals such as "The Will Rogers Follies" with Larry Gatlin, "Peter Pan" with Cathy Rigby, "The King and I" with Hayley Mills, Elton Johns' "Aida," "Beauty and the Beast," "Fiddler on the Roof" with Theodore Bikel, "The Rockettes," as well as local theater company productions of "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown," "The Wizard of Oz," "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat" with Sam Harris, "Oliver" with Jamie Farr and "I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change."
A graduate of the University of Tulsa where he studied piano with Anna Norberg, Carl has music directed American Theatre Company's productions of "Always, Patsy Cline" and "Honky Tonk Angels" and for 27-years taught in Tulsa Public Schools: 20 years at Carver Middle School where he taught band, orchestra, and occasionally chorus; two years at Central High School Academy of Fine Arts where he taught piano lab, jazz band, beginning band, studio technology, and music appreciation; and the last five years in the westside school cluster including Webster High School where he was director of bands teaching marching and concert band, jazz band, beginning band, and digital music tech. Since retiring from TPS, he now teaches jazz piano at Tulsa Community College, SE campus, and maintains a studio of private students studying jazz and classical piano, improvisation, composition, arranging, saxophone, and clarinet.
His most enjoyable musical experiences have been being the accompanist for and musical collaborator with his wife, vocalist and bassist Elizabeth Smith Curtis. Some of Carl's influences are Bill Evans, Chick Corea, Oscar Peterson, Dave McKenna, Thelonious Monk, William "Count" Basie, Robert Lamm, Vladimir Horowitz, Glenn Gould and many others.