JazzReach Announces 2011/2012 Season, Including Debut of All-New Multi-Media Educational Program Celebrating the Life and Music of Miles Davis

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Resident Ensemble Metta Quintet Releases Globally-Themed Recording “Big Drum, Small World” in Partnership with the Orchard on September 29 and Celebrates with Special Performance at New York City’s Jazz Standard on November 29 JazzReach, the widely heralded, New York City-based 501(c)(3) not-for-profit arts organization dedicated to the promotion, performance, creation and teaching of jazz music, announces the commencement of its 2011/2012 national touring season today, including the premiere of a multi-media education work celebrating the life and music of Miles Davis. JazzReach also announces today its partnership with the groundbreaking digital music distribution company, The Orchard, on the forthcoming release of Metta Quintet's new recording, "Big Drum, Small World," which will be marked with a special one-night only performance at New York City’s Jazz Standard on November 29, 2011.

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NYC-based JazzReach has been working tirelessly for more than 15 years to ensure that young people nationwide have access to the great American jazz tradition and to foster new audiences for the art form.

JazzReach (http://www.jazzreach.org/), the widely heralded, New York City-based 501(c)(3) not-for-profit arts organization dedicated to the promotion, performance, creation and teaching of jazz music, announces the commencement of its 2011/2012 national touring season today. In partnership with many of our country’s most distinguished performing arts venues and concert halls, the season will feature a broad mix of the organization’s signature live multi-media programs for young audiences (grades K-12), informative clinics and master-classes for student musicians and main-stage concerts for all audiences. All programming activities will be carried out exclusively JazzReach's acclaimed resident ensemble, METTA QUINTET, and aim to serve and enrich over 25,000 young people in more than 20 communities nationwide.

The season will kick-off on October 9, 2011 at the Touhill Performing Arts Center in St. Louis, MO with the world premiere of “Miles Davis and the Blue Flame Incident” – a captivating, all-new live multi-media educational program for student audiences (grades 6-12) that celebrates the legacy of the innovative late trumpeter, bandleader and cultural provocateur. The program was commissioned and is being presented by the esteemed St. Louis-based arts organization, Jazz St. Louis, in commemoration of Mr. Davis’ East St. Louis roots. Other season highlights include a busy touring schedule that will take JazzReach’s programs to student audiences throughout California, Maryland, Illinois, Iowa, Florida, South Carolina, Colorado and Wyoming along with two annual “Home Series’” that will feature the NYC-debut of the Miles Davis program and aim to serve more than 3,000 New York City Public School students. (See the complete season itinerary below).

JazzReach also announces today its partnership with the groundbreaking digital music distribution company, The Orchard, on the forthcoming release of METTA QUINTET’s new recording, Big Drum, Small World, which will be marked with a special one-night only performance at New York City’s Jazz Standard on November 29, 2011. Big Drum / Small World features captivating new music by the internationally renowned composers Miguel Zenon (Puerto Rico), Lionel Loueke (Benin, West Africa), Rudresh Mahanthappa (India), Yosvanny Terry (Cuba), Omer Avital (Israel) and METTA QUINTET’s very own Marcus Strickland (U.S.).

By merging a wide range of musical ideas, Big Drum / Small World explores and celebrates the ever-broadening definition and sound of jazz and aims to promote the value of creative collaboration and stylistic amalgamation.

JazzReach Founder and Executive/Artistic Director (and touring member of METTA QUINTET), Hans Schuman, explains the principles on which he founded the organization: “17 years ago, with little more than a set of drums, a great passion for this art form and an inherent desire to share it with young people, I established JazzReach on the premise that 1.) Music and the arts are essential; 2.) All young people are entitled access to arts education and high quality live performance opportunities and 3.), that a more culturally informed, aware and engaged society is richer, more vital society.”

Schuman continues, “While jazz has achieved great stature throughout the world as an indigenous American art form, lack of time and funding often prohibit the subject from being included in most American students’ standard U.S. history and social studies curricula (ironically). Yet nothing better exemplifies the American experience than jazz music. By placing a premium on both the individual soloist and the collective ensemble, jazz puts into rhythm and tune, our nation's highest democratic ideals. Jazz also serves as a unifying force, bridging cultural, religious, ethnic and economic differences. And at its best, the art form vividly illustrates the highest levels of creative expression and in turn, like all truly great art, possesses the unique capacity to uplift and illuminate all that’s possible in the realm of aesthetic self-realization.”

JazzReach 2011/2012 Season

October 9 &10, 2011     Jazz St Louis/ Touhill Performing Arts Center     St. Louis, MO
October 20, 2011                 Cam-Plex            Gillette, WY
October 21, 2011                 Lakewood Cultural Center            Lakewood, CO
November 4, 2011                 Bethel Woods Center for the Arts            Bethel, NY
December 8 & 9            JazzReach Home Series/RouletteBrooklyn     New York, NY
January 26, 2012                 California Center for the Arts     Escondido, CA
January 27, 2012                 Irvine Barclay Theater     Irvine, CA
January 30, 2012             Wells Fargo Center for the Arts            Santa Rosa, CA
January 31, 2012                 Montalvo            Saratoga, CA
February 1 -3, 2012             Arts for the Schools        Tahoe, CA
February 7, 2012                 Harlem Stage        New York, NY
February 16 -17, 2012            Ruth Eckerd Hall            Clearwater, FL
March 20, 2012                 Peace Center        Greenville, SC
April 5, 2012                    Bethel Woods Center for the Arts            Bethel, NY
April 9, 2012                    Harvard-Westlake School    Los Angeles, CA
April 10th, 2012                 Grammy Museum     Los Angeles, CA
April 11 -13, 2012             Santa Clarita PAC         Santa Clarita, CA
April 17, 2012                    Harlem Stage        New York, NY
April 18, 2012                    Mayo Arts Center            Morristown, NJ
May 1, 2012                     Urban Gateways     Chicago, IL
May 2, 2012                     The Grand Opera House        Dubuque, IA
May 3, 2012                     Civic Music Association    Des Moines, IA
TBD                                 JazzReach Home Series     New York, NY

JazzReach's 2011/2012 Season is being made possible by:

The National Endowment for the Arts, The Open Society Foundations, The Kitchings Family Foundation, The ASCAP Foundation, The Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation, The Back to You Fund, The Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation, The Seinfeld Family Foundation, WABC-TV, The BMI Foundation.

Additional support is provided by:

New York City Department of Cultural Affairs
The New York State Council on the Arts
The Brooklyn Arts Council
Zildjian Cymbals
The Blue Note Entertainment Group
Scharff-Weisberg
Vic Firth Drumsticks, Mallets and Brushes
Evans Drumheads

About JazzReach

Established in 1994, JazzReach is a nationally recognized New York City-based 501(c) (3) not-for-profit organization dedicated to the promotion, performance, creation and teaching of jazz music. Through the presentation of innovative, widely acclaimed live multi-media educational programs for young audiences, captivating main-stage concerts for general audiences and informative clinics and master-classes for student musicians and ensembles, JazzReach is steadfastly dedicated to fostering a greater appreciation, awareness and understanding of this rich, vital, ever-evolving American art form. Since premiering its debut educational program in 1997, JazzReach’s dynamic, innovative programs have triumphantly served more than 255,000 young people nationwide in partnership with many of America's most prominent performing arts presenters and have received unanimous praise from students, teachers, parents, the media and arts professionals alike.

Please visit http://www.jazzreach.org for more information.

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Judith Cohen