EAST LANSING, Mich. - The MSU College of Music is launching its new jazz studies artist in residence program this month thanks to a $1 million gift from MSU Federal Credit Union, the largest-ever investment in the college's curriculum.
October 14-19, saxophonist Antonio Hart, the first jazz artist of three scheduled for residencies this academic year, will take his place in the classroom and on the stage. Hart is an internationally acclaimed performer, prolific composer, and a renowned educator.
Hart will be teaching College of Music students and performing for the public while he is in residence. He will also work with high school and middle school jazz students in Lansing and in two West Michigan schools. Jazz Orchestra I, the college's premier student jazz ensemble, will tour with Hart around the state.
Trumpeter Jon Faddis and drummer Jeff Hamilton are the other international jazz artists slated to hold residencies at MSU in December and April, respectively.
"It is so exciting and satisfying to get this program started," said Rodney Whitaker, director of jazz studies. "Living in the center of the Midwest doesn't allow students easy access to the musicians influencing the world of jazz right now. So this way, with the support of MSU Federal Credit Union, we bring the jazz greats like Antonio Hart to the heart of Michigan. It is a win-win for our students and for our community."
"MSUFCU's generous gift will further strengthen one of America's great jazz programs," said James Forger, dean of the MSU College of Music, "and will provide unforgettable musical and educational experiences not only for our students, but also for thousands of people across Michigan."
Founded in 2001, the Jazz Studies Program leads the college's outreach efforts, teaching and mentoring youth at Community Music School-Detroit. MSU Professors of Jazz, a faculty performance group, has strong ties to Detroit and will work with the musicians to inspire cultural prosperity in urban areas.
Schedule for Antonio Hart residency
October 14-19, 2013
Tuesday, October 15, Byron Center High School, 8500 Burlingame Ave. SW, Byron Center, MI
1 p.m. arrival in Byron Center
1:45 p.m. combined rehearsal (Antonio Hart, Byron Center/MSU Jazz Orchestras)
3:30 p.m. master class with Byron Center High School students
7-8:30 p.m. performance
Wednesday, October 16, Harbor Lights Middle School, 1024 136th Ave., Holland, MI
2:30 p.m. arrival in Holland
4 p.m. master class with West Ottawa High School students
7:30-9 p.m. performance
Thursday, October 17, Open Rehearsal - 333 W. Circle Dr., MSU Campus
4:10 p.m Room 120 Music Building
Friday, October 18, Shabazz Academy Public High School, 1028 Barnes Ave., Lansing
7:45 a.m. arrival in Lansing
9-10 a.m. performance
Friday, October 18, 8 p.m., Performance with Jazz Orchestra I - MSU Union Ballroom
Saturday, October 19, St. Matthew's/St. Joseph's Episcopal Church, 8850 Woodward Ave., Detroit
4 p.m. performance
Tentative schedule for trumpeter Jon Faddis residency
December 5-9, 2013
Thursday, Open Rehearsal, MSU Campus
Friday, Marble Elementary School, East Lansing
Friday, Performance with Jazz Orchestra I, Fairchild Theatre
Saturday, Northview High School, Grand Rapids, MI
Sunday, St. Matthew's/St. Joseph's Church, Detroit
Tentative schedule for drummer Jeff Hamilton residency
April 7-12, 2014
Tuesday, Cheboygan High School, Cheboygan, MI
Thursday, MLK High School, Detroit
Thursday, Open Rehearsal, MSU Campus
Friday, McDonald Middle School, East Lansing
Friday, Performance with Jazz Orchestra I, Union Ballroom
Saturday, Performance with Jazz Orchestra I, Fairchild Theatre
Antonio Hart, one of the top alto saxophonists on the scene today, was classically trained at the Baltimore School for the Arts, studied jazz at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, and later earned his master's degree in music composition and performance at Queens College in New York. In 1991, Hart made his debut recording as leader, "For the First Time," on RCA/Novus. He has since gone on to perform around the globe and record over 80 albums with such eminent jazz artists as Nat Adderley, Monty Alexander, Terence Blanchard, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ray Brown, Cyrus Chestnut, Dizzy Gillespie, Slide Hampton, Jimmy Heath, Dave Holland, Christian McBride, Wallace Roney, McCoy Tyner, and Nancy Wilson. Hart's 1997 release, "Here I Stand," was nominated for a Grammy for Best Jazz Instrumental Solo. Besides being an internationally acclaimed performer and prolific composer, Hart is a renowned educator and enjoys working with up-and-coming young jazz artists. He currently serves as Professor of Jazz Saxophone at Queens College.
Jon Faddis, who began playing the trumpet at the age of eight, toured and recorded with the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Big Band for four years, and studied at the Manhattan School of Music during that time. By the age of 20, he had become widely acclaimed by the press; Dizzy Gillespie declared, "...he's the best ever - including me!" Faddis has become known throughout the world as one of the most innovative and inspiring jazz trumpeters of our time. He has an unfailing commitment to the education of young musicians and frequently conducts clinics and master classes to help the next generation of jazz musicians. In 1999, Jon was appointed Artist-in-Residence in the Conservatory of Music at Purchase College, State University of New York, where he teaches in both the Brass and Jazz Programs.
Jeff Hamilton grew up listening to his parents' big band records and at the age of eight began playing drums. He attended Indiana University and later studied with John Avon Ohlen. He got his first break playing with the New Tommy Dorsey Orchestra and joined Lionel Hampton's Band that led to becoming a member along with John Clayton, of the Monty Alexander Trio. He performed with Ella Fitzgerald, the Count Basie Orchestra, Rosemary Clooney, and Monty Alexander. The Los Angeles Jazz Society named Hamilton and his musical partner, John Clayton, musicians of the year for 2006. Hamilton is currently touring with his own trio, the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra, and Diana Krall. In addition to his many recordings with Ray Brown, he has been on nearly
200 recordings with artists such as Natalie Cole, Diana Krall, Milt Jackson, Rosemary Clooney, Barbara Streisand, Mel Torme, John Pizzarelli, Benny Carter, Lalo Schifrin, George Shearing, and many others. As well as recording and performing throughout the world, he also teaches, arranges, and composes.