PROGRESSIVE MUSIC COMPANY

AFRO-AMERICAN MUSIC INSTITUTE CELEBRATES 36 YEARS

BOYS CHOIR AFRICA SHIRTS
 
 
http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/building-today-for-tomorrow/x/267428

 Pain Relief Beyond Belief

                         http://www.komehsaessentials.com/                              

 

PITTSBURGH JAZZ

 

From Blakey to Brown, Como to Costa, Eckstine to Eldridge, Galbraith to Garner, Harris to Hines, Horne to Hyman, Jamal to Jefferson, Kelly to Klook; Mancini to Marmarosa, May to Mitchell, Negri to Nestico, Parlan to Ponder, Reed to Ruther, Strayhorn to Sullivan, Turk to Turrentine, Wade to Williams… the forthcoming publication Treasury of Pittsburgh Jazz Connections by Dr. Nelson Harrison and Dr. Ralph Proctor, Jr. will document the legacy of one of the world’s greatest jazz capitals.

 

Do you want to know who Dizzy Gillespie  idolized? Did you ever wonder who inspired Kenny Clarke and Art Blakey? Who was the pianist that mentored Monk, Bud Powell, Tad Dameron, Elmo Hope, Sarah Vaughan and Mel Torme? Who was Art Tatum’s idol and Nat Cole’s mentor? What musical quartet pioneered the concept adopted later by the Modern Jazz Quartet? Were you ever curious to know who taught saxophone to Stanley Turrentine or who taught piano to Ahmad Jamal? What community music school trained Robert McFerrin, Sr. for his history-making debut with the Metropolitan Opera? What virtually unknown pianist was a significant influence on young John Coltrane, Shirley Scott, McCoy Tyner, Bobby Timmons and Ray Bryant when he moved to Philadelphia from Pittsburgh in the 1940s?  Would you be surprised to know that Erroll Garner attended classes at the Julliard School of Music in New York and was at the top of his class in writing and arranging proficiency?

 

Some answers  can be gleaned from the postings on the Pittsburgh Jazz Network.

 

For almost 100 years the Pittsburgh region has been a metacenter of jazz originality that is second to no other in the history of jazz.  One of the best kept secrets in jazz folklore, the Pittsburgh Jazz Legacy has heretofore remained mythical.  We have dubbed it “the greatest story never told” since it has not been represented in writing before now in such a way as to be accessible to anyone seeking to know more about it.  When it was happening, little did we know how priceless the memories would become when the times were gone.

 

Today jazz is still king in Pittsburgh, with events, performances and activities happening all the time. The Pittsburgh Jazz Network is dedicated to celebrating and showcasing the places, artists and fans that carry on the legacy of Pittsburgh's jazz heritage.

 

WELCOME!

 

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Duke Ellington is first African-American and the first musician to solo on U.S. circulating coin

    MARY LOU WILLIAMS     

            INTERVIEW

       In Her Own Words

Oliver Byrd president and CEO, visit http://bit.ly/1dZJQzc.

By Tony LaRussa

Published: Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013, 3:15 p.m.

The head of the August Wilson Center on Tuesday announced a plan that focuses on dealing with the most pressing problems the financially troubled arts and cultural institution has had since opening in 2009.

“Today, the Center begins a new chapter,” said Oliver Byrd in a three-page letter distributed to the media and other organizations that outlines his turnaround plan.

“Not unlike other arts organizations, and culturally specific ones in particular, the August Wilson Center has found the road to sustainability to be particularly difficult,” Byrd said.

Byrd has set a 10-point agenda to prioritize the issues that need to be addressed but did not provide details on how those goals would be accomplished.

Byrd and other center staff did not respond to messages seeking additional details.

A “critical-self examination” of the center determined that its “existing business model was not sufficient to ensure the long-term sustainability of the organization,” according to the letter.

Since opening in 2009, the center along Liberty Avenue, Downtown, has been plagued by a $7.1 million debt because it did not raise enough money to cover construction costs.

Bringing in revenue has been a problem. Last year, it lost $1.8 million, more than twice the amount it took in.

According to Byrd's letter, an audit of the center's 2011-12 finances will be released in the next several weeks.

The audit is necessary before the Allegheny County Regional Asset District can award the center any funding for 2014. It is asking for $425,000 in taxpayer assistance.

“The (RAD) board is going to want to know what the plan is going forward for stabilizing its finances,” said David Donahoe, RAD's executive director.

The audit was due to RAD in March. RAD supports parks, libraries, stadiums and cultural groups with half of the proceeds of an additional 1 percent sales tax in Allegheny County.

The city's Urban Redevelopment Authority is withholding more than $1.4 million of a $2 million loan for operating expenses until the center produces the audit, according to Gigi Saladna, a spokeswoman for the URA.

URA officials declined to comment on Byrd's recovery plan.

Byrd's letter lists five factors that have hurt the center:

• The inability to pay its long-term debts.

• Instability in senior management that has “slowed progress toward a clear vision, path and structure for the future.”

• A loss of confidence among donors due to a lack of financial oversight.

• Damage to its public image by “frequent and inaccurate reporting by particular media sources.”

• “Tarnished community and artist relations” resulting from understaffing and strain on personnel.

Byrd has proposed raising more revenue by increasing the number of private events booked at the center. Increasing the number of arts groups that use the facility would help raise revenue, he said.

Center officials are working on developing programs that “create a closer link between the August Wilson Center and the late August Wilson himself,” according to the letter, which could include creation of educational content for teachers and a national award for those who bring the famed Pittsburgh playwright's work “to life.”

Tony LaRussa is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7987 or tlarussa@tribweb.com.


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