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(Published: January 26, 2010)

Afternoon, beginning at 12:30 p.m. -- Clinics and Student Jam Session offered
at Manhattan School of Music

at St. Bartholomew's Church
GUNTHER SCHULLER to offer introduction
EDMAR CASTANEDA, harp, guest artist

Featured will be Charles Mingus's music back in Church where it all began
Mingus's music returns to its "Blues & Gospel Roots"

Showcased will be such tunes as "Better Get Hit In Your Soul," "Ecclusiastics,"
and poet Langston Hughes "Consider me, oh Lord" set to music and narrated
by Ku-umba Frank Lacy

Gunther Schuller to conduct his arrangement of "Noon Night" from "Epitaph"

Premiere of Michael Rabinowitz's arrangement of Mingus's "Noddin ‘Ya Head Blues'" for flute, bassoon and clarinet

Program will illustrate Mingus's long-time mission to expand the instrumental possibilities in jazz; Program will feature instruments such as the harp, bassoon, French horn, and bass clarinet


This year expanded Nationwide

12 Big Bands and Combos from throughout the United States
have been selected to compete at Manhattan School of Music
10:00 a.m. - Competition -- HIGH SCHOOL JAZZ COMBOS
2:15 p.m. -- Competition -- HIGH SCHOOL BIG BANDS
5:30 p.m. -- Concert -- MSM MINGUS COMBO; Steve Slagle, director
6:00 p.m. -- Concert -- MINGUS DYNASTY
6:30 p.m. -- AWARDS CEREMONY
The music and legacy of Charles Mingus will be returning to Manhattan School of Music on Saturday, February 13 and Sunday, February 14, 2010, when MSM collaborates with Let My Children Hear Music/The Charles Mingus Institute to host the 2nd Annual Charles Mingus Festival. This two-day tribute to Mingus is being produced by Sue Mingus and Justin DiCioccio, who collaborated on last year's successful Charles Mingus Festival. Last year's festival featured 1st Charles Mingus High School Competition, open to high schools in the northeast.

* * * * *
Charles Mingus, a virtuoso bassist, accomplished pianist, and bandleader is also recognized as a major 20th-century composer, whose entire works have been acquired by the Library of Congress - a first for jazz, and a first for an African-American composer. He recorded more than 100 albums and composed more than 300 compositions, music that is still considered far ahead of its time, leaving behind the largest legacy of composition in American music after Duke Ellington. The Mingus Bands remain devoted to this vast repertoire and under the artistic direction of Sue Mingus, play to critical acclaim throughout the world. Their critical and popular successes are a testament to the power of Mingus's composition. The availability of his music through published arrangements, educational books, school courses, and workshops, coupled with the hugely successful Charles Mingus High School Competition, have extended the reach of his legacy.

* * * * *
On Saturday, February 13, student jazz musicians from twelve high schools hailing from throughout the United States will be coming to Manhattan School of Music to compete in the 2nd Annual Charles Mingus High School Competition for Big Bands and Combos.
The day's events, with clinics beginning at 12:30 p.m., are listed below.
All of the sessions listed below are FREE; open to the public; and subject to change.
12:15 p.m. Mingus Movies: The musicologist, composer, arranger and bandleader, Andrew Homzy will be showing from "Mingus" and "Triumph of the Underdog"; Mingus conducting "Meditations"; and music clips from "Mingus in Europe with Eric Dolphy, 1964"
2:00 p.m. Rhythm Clinic with Boris Kozlov, bass; Donald Edwards, drums;
and David Kikoski, piano
"The Art (and Necessity) of Conversation within the Rhythm Section"
2:00 p.m. Saxophone Clinic with Donny McCaslin
"Thematic development and improvisation in Mingus's music"
Mr. McCaslin will be demonstrating the art of improvising creatively over different song forms used in Mingus's music. Compositions to be looked at will include "Haitian Fight Song," "Boogie Stop Shuffle," and "Fables of Faubus."
2:00 p.m. Brass Clinic with Conrad Herwig and Ku-umba Frank Lacy, trombones; and
Kenny Rampton, trumpet
"Playing Mingus melodies on a brass instrument"
Mingus compositions such as "Reincarnation of a Lovebird," "Haitian Fight Song," and "Children's Hour of Dream" will be examined, taking a look at how to translate lines, and solo with a plunger. Improvisational insight into Mingus's solo forms and chord structures.
3:30 p.m. Band Directors Clinic with Justin DiCioccio
3:30 p.m. Student Jam Session concentrating on the compositions of Charles Mingus. This jam session is open high school students participating in the competition ONLY.
(Park Ave. & 50th Street)
Mingus's music back in Church where it all began returning
to its "Blues and Gospel Roots"
arrangement of "Noon Night" from "Epitaph"; Colombian Harpist EDMAR
CASTENEDA, featured soloist.

On Saturday evening at 7:00 p.m. at St. Bartholomew's Church (located at Park Avenue and 50th Street) the Mingus Orchestra will be showcasing music from Mingus's blues and gospel roots. This concert, "BETTER GET IT IN YOUR SOUL" will showcase music where it all began for Mingus - in the Church. Gunther Schuller will be on hand to introduce the program, and to conduct his arrangement of "Noon Night" from "Epitaph." Other tunes to be performed will include gospel songs such as "Better Get it in Your Soul," "Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting" and "Consider Me, Oh Lord" a long-ago collaboration of Mingus's music set to text by Langston Hughes, to be narrated by Ku-umba Frank Lacy. The concert will also include the premiere of Michael Rabinowitz's arrangement of Mingus's "Noddin ‘Ya Head Blues'" for flute, bassoon and clarinet. This work is an example of Mingus's vision to expand the instrumental possibilities of jazz beyond the norm of saxophones, trumpets, trombones and rhythm sections. He believed in using all genres of music scoring for French horn, clarinets, flutes, the harp and bassoon as well.
This concert was conceived not only as an introduction and opportunity for the competition's high school students coming to New York the chance to experience a performance showcasing Mingus's music in one of New York City's premier cultural and spiritual centers, St. Bartholomew's Church, but to also give New York City concertgoers the thrilling opportunity to hear Charles Mingus's music in a setting where it all began - the Church.
Joining the Mingus Orchestra as guest artist will be the young, Colombian Harpist Edmar Castaneda. Musicians performing in the Mingus Orchestra will include Vincent Herring, alto saxophone; Wayne Escoffery, tenor saxophone; Ku-umba Frank Lacy, trombone/vocals; Kenny Rampton, trumpet; Michael Rabinowitz, bassoon; John Clark, French horn; Douglas Yates, bass clarinet; Jack Wilkins, guitar; Boris Kozlov, bass; and Donald Edwards, drums; and Edmar Castaneda, harp.
The Mingus Orchestra at St. Bartholomew's Church is a FREE concert and open to the public. For information call
212 736 4749.

Sunday will focus on the Charles Mingus High School Competition, open this year to high school jazz combos and big bands hailing nationwide, as well as concerts by the MSM Mingus Combo and the Mingus Dynasty. An awards ceremony, announcing the winning high school combo and big band, will conclude this year's 2-day Charles Mingus Festival.
The Charles Mingus High School Competition will be held in Manhattan School of Music's John C. Borden Auditorium, beginning at 10:00 a.m. This year's competition will include big bands and combos representing twelve schools from across the country. Serving as adjudicators for the first round of pre-screening CDs were prominent jazz educators and musicians including Justin DiCioccio, Gunther Schuller, Robin Eubanks, Conrad Herwig, James Newton, Christian McBride, Donny McCaslin, Andrew Homzy, Boris Kozlov and others.
The day's schedule and competing ensembles are listed below. All competing ensembles will be allotted a ½ hour time slot for their performance. The competition is FREE and open to the public.
Adjudicators: Justin DiCioccio, Vincent Herring, Andrew Homzy
Combo Category - Regular
• Foxborough High School Jazz Quintet - Foxborough, MA.
Stephen C. Massey, Director
• Rio Americano Combo - Rio Americano High School. Sacramento, CA.
Max Kiesner, Director
• Rivers Select Combo - The Rivers School. Weston MA.
Philippe Crettien, Director

11:45 a.m. Combo Category - Specialized
• Eastman Youth Jazz Orchestra - Rochester, NY.
Howard Potter, Director
• Manasia Improv Ensemble - Manhattan School of Music. NY, NY.
Jeremy Manasia, Director
• York College Blue Notes - New York, NY.
Tom Zlabinger, Director

Adjudicators: Conrad Herwig, Gunther Schuller, Boris Kozlov

Big Band Category - Regular
• Boston Latin Big Band -- Boston Latin School. Boston, MA.
Paul J. Pitts, Band Director
• Kenmore East High School Jazz Band - Tonawanda, NY.
Phil Aguglia, Band Director
• Rivers Big Band -- The Rivers School. Weston, MA.
Philippe Crettien, Band Director

4:00 p.m. Big Band Category - Specialized
• Academy Big Band - Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts. Hartford,Ct
Douglas Maher, Band Director
• Eastman Youth Jazz Orchestra - Rochester, NY.
Howard Potter, Band Director
• Manhattan School of Music Precollege Big Band - New York, NY.
Jeremy Manasia, Band Director

5:30 p.m. CONCERT - MSM Mingus Combo, Steve Slagle, director

6:00 p.m. CONCERT - MINGUS DYNASTY: Vincent Herring, alto saxophone; Wayne Escoffery, tenor saxophone; Kenny Rampton, trumpet; Ku-umba Frank Lacy, trombone; David Kikoski, piano; Boris Kozlov, bass; and Donald Edwards, drums

6:30 p.m. AWARDS CEREMONY with Sue Mingus and Justin DiCioccio

Sue Mingus remarked about the Charles Mingus High School Competition, "Our adjudicators were impressed by the high quality of the submissions and thrilled to hear Mingus music played with such heart and commitment. We are all very excited to see Mingus energy thriving and inspiring these young musicians."
Justin DiCioccio, one of the first jazz educators to introduce Mingus' music to students some thirty years ago said, "Not only was Mingus the foremost jazz bassist of his time, but as a composer his music has the essence of what jazz is about."
"You are guaranteed a great and profound experience when you perform music by this giant of jazz composition." stated Gunther Schuller.

The Charles Mingus Festival is FREE and open to the public. For information, call 212 736 4749 or visit
www.msmnyc.edu or www.mingusmingusmingus.co....

Manhattan School of Music is located on the northwest corner of Broadway and 122nd Street in New York City.
St. Bartholomew's Church is located at 325 Park Avenue at 50th Street.

Sue Mingus has created and continues to direct repertory ensembles that carry on the music of her late husband, Charles Mingus, who passed away in 1979. The most well known is the Mingus Dynasty Big Band, a New York institution, which performs weekly at the Jazz Standard, alternating with the Mingus Dynasty and the Mingus Orchestra. In 1989, she produced Mingus's monumental 31-musician Epitaph in its premiere at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall. In 2002, Pantheon (Random House) released Sue's memoir of her life with Mingus entitled Tonight at Noon, which was a New York Times Notable Book and a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year. It was released in paperback by DaCapo press and has been translated into several languages.
She has produced numerous Grammy-nominated recordings with Mingus repertory bands as well as several legacy recordings, including a previously unavailable Mingus concert with Eric Dolphy at Cornell University in 1964, recently released on Blue Note. Sue Mingus has published educational books, starting with the ground-breaking Charles Mingus: More than a Fake Book, as well as the series Charles Mingus: More than a Play Along, distributed by Hal Leonard Publishers, along with a dozen Mingus Big Band charts, a book of guitar charts arranged by Jack Wilkins and, most recently, a new series for younger students called Simply Mingus.
* * * * *
Justin DiCioccio is internationally recognized as one of the foremost jazz educators of our time. His keen insight into teaching and his inventive approach have earned him the title "the musician's teacher." His many performances, guest conducting appearances, adjudications, jazz and percussion clinics, and workshops are widely recognized in the professional and educational fields.
In June 2002, Mr. DiCioccio was named Assistant Dean of Manhattan School of Music, where he has chaired the Jazz Arts Program since 1999 and has been a member of the jazz faculty, teaching percussion and coaching ensembles, since 1984. Under his leadership, the jazz curriculum has been completely restructured, including the creation of a new jazz D.M.A. program. Mr. DiCioccio directs international jazz programs, in partnership with Manhattan School of Music, that take place in Amsterdam, Holland. In addition, he works actively in Manhattan School of Music's educational outreach program, bringing jazz education to hundreds of New York City public schoolchildren. He also initiated the addition of a jazz component to the Precollege Division, open to students ages 10 to 18, making Manhattan School of Music one of the few institutions in the country to offer jazz programs at the elementary, secondary, undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate levels.
Mr. DiCioccio has served as program director and clinician for Carnegie Hall Jazz Education, acts as a consultant to Jazz at Lincoln Center and Wynton Marsalis, with whom he also performs and gives clinics. He designed, developed, and directed the internationally known and award-winning LaGuardia High School of the Arts jazz program, the first fully accredited secondary jazz program in the United States. Mr. DiCioccio is the recipient of a citation from the mayor of New York for "Distinguished and Exceptional Service to Young Instrumentalists." He is a three-time recipient of the Presidential Scholars teaching recognition award in the jazz field by the U.S. Department of Education. In May 1998, the Commission Project, in partnership with the New York City Board of Education, created the JD Award for Outstanding Service to Music in New York City Schools. The award, presented annually, recognizes and celebrates individuals who have made significant contributions to the world of music education and named Mr. DiCioccio as its first honoree. Mr. DiCioccio's performing and conducting credentials include concerts, commercials, Broadway shows, and recordings with jazz, orchestral, rock, and new music groups.
* * * * *

More Information: http://www.msmnyc.edu

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