The sensation of Jazzistry remains with any audience that experiences it, from age eight to eighty. Its live performance has unmatched energy. History is vividly brought to life. And the music is arousing because it is rooted in our collective American psyche. This is a performance for everyone.
“Every American can be proud of jazz.
It embodies our most admired cultural characteristics —
self expression, spontaneity, boldness and invention!” – Vincent York
Elements of a Jazzistry Program
Jazzistry Band Presentation
The centerpiece of the program is the professional six-piece Jazzistry Band. The ensemble is composed of the finest jazz musicians in the region. Their 45-90 minute performance (geared to the age of the students) is a fast-paced, multi-media enhanced, educational experience that moves through 400 years of American history and culture, using the story of jazz as its vehicle. This presentation showcases the evolution of America’s indigenous music, emphasizing America’s multicultural strengths.
An Artist in Residence Visit is the foundation that prepares listeners to fully embrace the mission of the Jazzistry Presentation. The visit is an hour-long session with a Jazzistry musician and his or her instruments. It’s a hands-on experience with lots of student participation, singing, a PowerPoint presentation and other visuals. It helps the students cultivate a personal relationship with our history and shows them how we are benefiting from our multicultural heritage. This is the first step in expanding how students view our society.
Teacher Professional Development
Jazzistry creates, adapts and models creative approaches to standard content areas through collaborative partnerships with the teachers we serve. Prior to the band’s presentation, York and Tasha Lebow, founding board member and former PEO Program Manager, meet with teachers to explain Jazzistry’s alignment with state and national curriculum standards. These conversations allow us to incorporate direct connections in the Jazzistry Presentation to the core curriculum. Many teachers and students report that Jazzistry is their first exposure to cross discipline connections.