(from The Seedling Foundation)
The Stivers School for the Arts Jazz Orchestra is going to New York to perform at Lincoln Center as distinguished student artists with the New York City Jazz Festival. The festival features the best of college jazz performers plus four selected high school ensembles, and as winners of the 2010 Berklee College of Music National High School Jazz Festival, Stivers was not required to audition for the spot on the New York City Jazz Festival lineup. Festival managers heard the Dayton group in Boston and extended the invitation.
Produced by Manhattan Concert Productions, the New York City Jazz Festival will feature Kurt Elling, the Grammy-winning male vocalist, and Bob Mintzer, multiple Grammy Award winner, composer, arranger and Yellowjackets big band leader. The Stivers Orchestra will participate in pre-performance workshops under the direction of Festival Artistic Director Steve Zegree – internationally recognized as one of the most respected jazz conductors and active as a pianist, conductor and jazz clinician.
Benefit concert scheduled
The trip depends upon the orchestra raising funds for travel and registration. A benefit concert featuring the Stivers Jazz Orchestra is scheduled for 8:00pm on Saturday, January 21 at Stivers Centennial Hall. The concert will feature one of America’s finest jazz trumpeters, Derrick Gardner. Gardner, who travels with Harry Connick, Jr. and the Count Basie Orchestra, is a distinguished composer, arranger, performer and teacher. For over 20 years Gardner has headed the Jazz Prophets, a distinguished sextet in the tradition of the funky, soulful jazz sound Cannonball Adderly and Horace Silver. Gardner has also performed with the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra.
General admission tickets for the benefit concert are $10. They can be ordered online at www.theseedlings.org or by calling 937-546-1675. Patron tickets are available at $50. Patrons are invited to a pre-performance reception with Derrick Gardner and will receive reserved seating. Patron tickets qualify for a $25 tax deduction.
Stivers Jazz Orchestra director Claude Thomas said of the Festival invitation, “In September, the Stivers Jazz Orchestra was invited to perform at the New York City Jazz Festival at Lincoln Center’s Allen Room. The invitation followed years of national performances by our Jazz Orchestra at Boston’s Berklee High School Jazz Festival. We have competed at Berklee 3 times and won 3 times, including 2011. How do you get to Carnegie Hall? ….. practice. In the jazz world, you ask how do you get to Lincoln Center? The same way, plus playing for the Dayton community like in our January 21st concert to raise travel and registration funds. The Stivers Jazz Orchestra is one of only 4 high schools in the country invited to perform, an unbelievable opportunity and honor for theDayton community, our school and students, past and present who have worked so hard to make this invitation a reality.”
The concert is sponsored by the seedling Foundation, a 501 [c]  non-profit organization that supports arts programs at Stivers School for the Arts.
For more information call Bill Pflaum, 937-469-2662.