Grammy-nominated and Fulbright Scholar Dr. Gene Aitken is considered one of the most exciting and energetic jazz educator/clinicians today, and is recognized as a visionary in both jazz education and computer technology. His activities as a conductor, performer, composer, adventurer, clinician, adjudicator, and producer of educational events have led him to all corners of the globe. His recent travels to many countries in Asia and the Middle East include China, Taiwan, Thailand, Egypt, Lebanon, Iraq, and many others. This coming year, as CEO of Jazz Education Abroad, an USA non-profit organization, Dr. Gene will be involved in many classical and jazz summer camps, festivals, and workshops, including the new 2015 GRAMMY China Camp – Shanghai Jazz Session. This unique event is a collaboration of Jazz Education Abroad, the USA GRAMMY organization and China Music Visions. In addition, upcoming jazz workshop events and festivals will be held in Cyprus, Lebanon, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and many other countries. Dr. Aitken will return to China/Taiwan again this September, October and November 2015, with Music/Jazz Education Festivals in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Beijing, Hong Kong, and other cities. He is the Events Director of the for the Third Biennial China Jazz Education Festival and Competition (Shanghai); Special Advisor for the Third China Jazz Drum Summit presented by the Contemporary Music Academy (Beijing); Director of the China non-profit organization, Rainbow Music Education; co-Director of the Taiwan Jazz Orchestra (Taipei); and Director of the Hong Kong International Jazz Festival. On April 15, 2011, the United States Department of State, on behalf of the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, announced Dr. Aitken was the recipient of a Fulbright Specialist Award to assist in developing jazz studies programs and curriculum in Taipei, Taiwan. In June 2007, Dr. Gene was awarded DownBeat magazine’s Jazz Educator of the Year and inducted into the DownBeat magazine’s Hall of Fame. In addition, he was the 32nd member inducted into the 1995 International Association of Jazz Educator’s Hall of Fame along with Ella Fitzgerald and Doc Severinson, joining luminaries such as Count Basie, Duke Ellington, and others. Dr. Aitken is only one of four individuals in the world who have received induction into both organizations’ Hall of Fame. Also, during the same month, Dr. Aitken was appointed the first Cultural Envoy to Nepal by the US Department of State. While there he worked with the Kathmandu Jazz Conservatory Jazz Ensemble, the Nepal Police Academy Band, the Nepal Army Band, and various community groups. The State of Colorado in 1992 awarded Dr. Gene the highest honor given to any artist, the Colorado Artistic Award of Excellence. It has been the only time this honor has been presented to an individual in the field of music. The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences awarded the University of Northern Colorado Vocal Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. Gene, a prestigious 1985 Grammy Nomination. It is the only time NARAS has ever awarded this honor to an institution of higher education in the Vocal Jazz Category. As of this date, he has produced over 40 CDs from the University of Northern Colorado, professional jazz ensembles and vocal jazz ensembles. He has authored 30 articles for national and international journals on jazz education and computer technology, plus has had several musical compositions published through Kendor Music. In June 1997, the National Education Association published a chapter in their book, “Music in the Twenty-first Century” by Aitken on the future of music education in the United States. He has presented seminars and workshops at the Mid-West Band and Orchestra Clinic, the National Association of the Schools of Music, the Society for Applied Learning Technology, the National Education Association, the American Choral Directors’ Association and the International Association of Jazz Educators’ Association. In addition to conducting many clinics, workshops and performances in the instrumental and vocal jazz area, he presents seminars and workshops promoting multimedia and music technology. In the area of grantsmanship, Gene has served on the Colorado Council for the Arts Review Panel in 1997-1998 and again in 1999-2000. He has been on several successful grant-writing teams including the multimillion-dollar award from the Colorado Commission on Higher Education, as well as being on the team receiving one of the highest-dollar grant awards from the National Endowment for the Arts. In addition, he has received several separate grants from the Colorado Commission on Higher Education, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Colorado Council on the Arts, the Oregon Arts Council, and the Schram Foundation. Gene has worked in Los Angeles in the area of multimedia development at the American Film Institute as well as in the Departments of Asian Studies and Film Scoring at University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). He retired from the University of Northern Colorado in 2002 after serving 27 years as Director of the UNC Jazz Studies Program. Dr. Gene currently resides in the Bangkok, Thailand and Beirut, Lebanon.
16 April 2015
Dan Gailey, saxophonist/composer/arranger, is in his 25th year as the Director of Jazz Studies and Professor of Music at the University of Kansas, where he directs Jazz Ensemble I, teaches courses in jazz composition and arranging, produces the annual KU Jazz Festival, and is director of the KU Jazz Workshop. He is the recipient of the 1996 IAJE Gil Evans Fellowship, an annual award which identifies an emerging jazz composer from an international field of candidates. Under his direction, the KU Jazz Studies Program has been the recipient of 22 DownBeat Student Music Awards, including Jazz Ensemble I’s 2015 award for Best College Jazz Ensemble.
Dan holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Pacific Lutheran University and a Master of Music degree in Theory/Composition from the University of Northern Colorado. His compositions can be heard on numerous professional and college big band albums and are published exclusively through UNC Jazz Press. What Did You Dream?, his debut CD with the Dan Gailey Jazz Orchestra, was released in July 2010 on Origin/OA2 Records and features all original compositions. The CD spent almost 2 years on the JazzWeek Radio Airplay charts, and received very favorable reviews from JAZZIZ, JazzTimes and Cadence magazines, among others.
Mariano is a versatile player in the jazz and classical idioms. He has being playing concerts, festivals, and doing master classes and workshops in more than half the world. After graduating summa cum laude in Jazz Studies he did a Masters in Arts in woodwind performance and pedagogy at FAU, where he also taught in the jazz program. After playing in the Kathmandu Jazz Festival he decided to stay in Nepal and in 2007 founded the Kathmandu Jazz Conservatory (www.katjazz.com) as well as the non-profit organization Nepal Music Educators’ Society (www.nmes.com.np). Since 2010 he has been working with Dr. Aitken in many problematic areas of the world. Now a day he spends most of the time traveling and living between Madrid and Kathmandu.
Born in Chicago, Adam has performed with jazz artists such as Scott Hamilton, Melvin Sparks, Keith Tippett, Nostalgia 77, David Berkman, Herb Geller, Bobby Wellins, Martin Zenker, Tony Monaco, Barbara Morrison and Peter King. He has lived in New York City, Berlin, Edinburgh, Chicago, Salt Lake City, and Taipei, and has performed all over the world. Touring with his own quartet in the US and the UK, he has performed with his groups in the Edinburgh Jazz Festival, Glasgow Jazz Festival, Fettes Jazz Festival and the Williamsburg Jazz Festival, among others. He has also toured and recorded with rock and folk artists such as The Blood Oranges, Amy Allison, Neil Cleary, Jerry Joseph, The Jackmormons, John Carlin and Megan Peters, and has shared the stage opening for bands such as The Wailers, ZZ Top, Hot Tuna, X, Weezer, Cracker, Michelle Shocked, O.A.R., Mike Watt, Kansas, and War, among many others.
While living in New York City from 1999 – 2005 Sorensen earned a BFA in Jazz Performance at the New School University, where he studied with jazz greats such as Carl Allen, Gregory Hutchinson, Ari Hoenig, Michael Carvin, Gerri Allen, Peter Bernstein, Hal Galper, Jane Ira Bloom, Andrew Cyrille, George Garzone, and others. He performed regularly in NY’s music scene, and while living in NY, had the opportunity to perform, tour, and record with a number of great artists both in and out of the jazz scene.
As an educator, Sorensen has taught privately throughout his career in the U.S., Europe, and Asia. He has also taught drumming master classes, jazz workshops, and rhythm section workshops, in the United States, Europe, and Asia.
In addition to his career as a drummer, Adam has recorded and performed internationally as a singer/songwriter/guitarist, and released his solo debut in 2012, entitled ‘MIDWEST’, on City Creek Records. This record made the list for Top Folk Albums of 2012. He has toured Europe, Asia and the US, to support ‘Midwest’, and has received great reviews and radio play in the US, Europe, New Zealand and Australia. His new singer/songwriter record is coming out in the fall of 2016. On ‘Midwest’, Sorensen features a number of talented musicians including jazz mandolin great, Don Stiernberg, jazz violinist Eyvind Kang (Bill Frisell), jazz cellist Chris Hoffman (Henry Theadgill), and multi-instrumentalist Mark Spencer (Son Volt).
Dave Glenn was Director of Jazz Studies and professor of low brass at Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington from 1989-2011. He received a Bachelor of Music in trombone performance from North Texas State University and a Master of Music in composition from the University of Northern Colorado. Dave Glenn spent 11 years as a professional trombonist in New York City. While there, he played for ten years with the Gerry Mulligan Concert Jazz Band and toured extensively with Bill Watrous’ Manhattan Wildlife Refuge, Diana Ross and Lou Rawls. Dave also subbed on tours with Chuck Mangione, Blood, Sweat and Tears and the Mel Lewis Orchestra. He was on the Grammy-award winning recording Walk on the Water by the Gerry Mulligan Concert Jazz Band. Dave Glenn has also recorded two jazz CDs of his original compositions and arrangements, “Journeys” and “National Pastime” (released in June 2009). He has composed five commissioned works for orchestra, the latest being “Romantic Fantasy on Themes by Mozart” by the Walla Walla Symphony in 2015, and numerous chamber works including “Fireflies”, the title piece of a CD by the Free Range Saxophone Quartet (Origin Classical Records) and “Sculpture Garden for Piano Quintet”, commissioned by the Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival. Dave Glenn is an endorsing artist for Conn/Selmer, a member of American Composers Forum, an Origin Records recording artist and a member of the Executive Board of Directors of Jazz Education Abroad.
A native of Iowa, Phillip Dunlap currently resides in St. Louis, Missouri where he is active as a musician and educator. He holds Bachelor of Music degrees in jazz performance (piano) and music theory/composition and a Masters of Music in jazz performance from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. While there he studied with renowned pianist and educator, Reginald Thomas.
Since 2007, Dunlap has filled the role of Director of Education and Community Engagement for Jazz St. Louis (JSL), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the thriving of jazz in America. In addition to helping JSL operate one of the top-ten jazz clubs in America (Jazz at the Bistro), Mr. Dunlap manages their extensive portfolio of education programs and outreach programs. In 2010, he was chosen as 30 under 30 by the St. Louis Business Journal.
Phil currently teaches courses in Music Business at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and jazz history at the University of Missouri, St. Louis and has performed throughout the United States and abroad with his own group, the Phil Dunlap Quintet, and as a sideman having performed with musicians such as Jimmy Cobb, Terell Stafford, John Pizzarelli, Houston Person, Harold Jones, Sara Gazarek, Byron Stripling, Vincent Gardner, Kenny Rampton, Walter Blanding, Christine Brewer.