02/29/12

Charles Mingus High School Competition Winner announced

17-year-old trumpeter Adam O’Farrill takes top honor

Jazz talent from 10 high schools all over the country performed at the Fourth Annual Charles Mingus High School Competition, celebrating the jazz virtuoso’s 90th birthday anniversary, on February 19 in New York City. The daylong event ended with the announcement of the lucky recipients of the Charles Mingus Scholarship award, 20 outstanding soloist awards, as well as combo and big band performance awards for both regular high school and specialized performing arts schools.

“Everyone who competed today was a winner. The level of playing was remarkable and the best that I have heard yet at the high school level,” said Justin DiCioccio, Assistant Dean and Chair of Manhattan School of Music’s Jazz Arts Program.

The winner of the prestigious Charles Mingus Scholarship to attend MSM was 17-year-old Adam O’Farrill, a trumpet talent from the LaGuardia High School Jazz Sextet, who already has two Outstanding Soloist awards from past Charles Mingus High School Competitions.

“All of the adjudicators were astonished with the musicianship heard today. For years, Mingus’ music was thought to be too difficult to perform, and today, the spirit and vitality that was heard by all of the young musicians playing Mingus’ music was really thrilling. The future of the music is in the hands of these kids. They are keeping the music alive,” said Sue Mingus, Director of Let My Children Hear Music/The Charles Mingus Institute.

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