Did you know that April is Jazz Appreciation Month? In conjunction with the national and international celebrations of this creative music, the Jazz Institute of Chicago leads Chicago’s celebration with a full month of concerts and educational events presented in communities throughout the city. Kicking off the month with our Big Sounds at Tiny Tavern; a new series presented in partnership with Navy Pier which highlights Chicago’s emerging voices; and concluding with a diverse performance exploring cultural influences on Jazz at the Chicago Cultural Center presented in celebration of International Jazz Day, the month offers several opportunities to learn, explore and enjoy.
The full schedule follows and all programs are free unless otherwise indicated. Artists are subject to change.
Jazz Appreciation Month Programs
April 1, 2017 – Jazz Links Jazz Ambassadors Live
Chicago Public Library – Beverly Branch | 1962 95th St | 3-4pm
See our youngest performers live in concert at the Beverly Branch of the Chicago Public Library. The Jazz Institute of Chicago’s Jazz Ambassadors provides students in grades 6-12 the opportunity to improve improvisation and performance skills during intensive Saturday rehearsals. Don’t miss this 18-piece ensemble of talented and dedicated youth in performance.
April 6, 2017 – Big Sounds at Tiny Tavern featuring the Cole DeGenova Quartet
Navy Pier | 600 E. Grand Avenue | 5:30pm
A new free series featuring emerging talent from our Jazz Links Alumni, Big Sounds at Tiny Tavern provides a free opportunity to hear what new voices in jazz have to say. Take a mid-week break and enjoy music from the Cole DeGenova Quartet featuring Cole DeGenova (Piano), Hunter Diamond (Sax), Josh Ramos (Bass) and Makaya McCraven (Drums).
April 11, 2017 – Jazz Institute of Chicago’s 48th Birthday
Did you know we were founded during Jazz Appreciation Month? In 1969, a grassroots group of jazz writers, educators, musicians, and jazz club and record label owners had a vision to create an organization that would support the future of Jazz In Chicago. On April 11, and all year long, we bring that vision to life through our concert and education programs and our mission to promote and nurture jazz in Chicago. Send us a birthday wish on Facebook and tell us how you are celebrating Jazz Appreciation Month
April 12, 2017 – Jazz Links Jam Session
Chicago Cultural Center | 78 E. Washington – Randolph Cafe | 5:30pm
The Jazz Links Jam Sessions, presented in partnership with the Chicago Cultural Center, provide students age 9-19 with a real-world opportunity to perform with their peers. Held monthly at the Chicago Cultural Center. from 5:30-7:30pm. Family friendly and free.
April 14, 2017 – JazzCity: NextGen Jazz Summit
Loyola Park | 1230 W Greenleaf Ave | 7pm
Curated by educator and saxophonist Jarrard Harris, this handpicked ensemble is comprised of some of Chicago’s newest bright jazz voices including Jalen Baker, vibes; Julius Tucker (piano); Justin Boyd and Greg Artry (drums); Andrew Vogt and Runere Brooks (bass); Hunter Jay Diamond, Mai Sugimoto and Leonard Simpson (saxophone) and Quentin Coaxum, trumpet. This performance is part of the JazzCity free concert series, celebrating 20 years of bringing music to communities throughout Chicago in partnership with the Chicago Park District.
April 19, 2017 – Celebrate the Power of Jazz Education
The Standard Club | 320 S. Plymouth Ct., 2nd floor | 6-8:30pm
$85 per person ($75 for JIC Members)
Support the future of jazz in Chicago and the importance of jazz education during an elegant evening of music honoring Jazz Educators of the Year David Bloom and Dr. Roosevelt Griffin, III. Evening includes dinner and a complimentary cocktail and a cash bar with music provided by participants in our Jazz Links education programs. Paid parking is available at Interpark located at 318 S. Federal. Proceeds from this event support our Jazz Links education programs. To purchase tickets, visit jazzinchicago.org
April 25, 2017 – Jazz Education Day: Demystifying the Jazz Process
Chicago Cultural Center | 78 E. Washington | Noon – 8pm
The Jazz Institute of Chicago and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events present Jazz Education Day: Demystifying the Jazz Process; a free public program in celebration of Jazz Appreciation Month. Learn about jazz with leading musician and educator Dana Hall, explore Jazz in the Media with radio personality Richard Steele, improve your performance during a jam session and connect with other music lovers! Various Locations (see jazzinchicago.org for details).
April 30, 2017 – International Jazz Day
Chicago Cultural Center – Claudia Cassidy Theater | 78 E. Washington | 2-4PM
In celebration of International Jazz Day, the Jazz Institute of Chicago honors the diversity of jazz and it’s ability to forge new connections by featuring two ensembles that represent the global influences of the music. Mexican drummer Gustavo Cortiñas presents music from his new album “Esse,” which “gathers fellow musicians from Chicago to contemplate, through composition and improvisation, the relationship between essence and being.” Alfonso Ponticelli & Swing Gitan performs a blend of American jazz, Gypsy jazz, Flamenco, and world folk music threaded together through virtuosic improvisation.”