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America Pays For Jazz

American taxpayers can be proud that the hard earned dollars they so generously give to Uncle Sam are being used in part by the National Endowment for the Arts to keep jazz alive. The NEA’s January announcement of Creativity Grants for the fiscal year 2001 includes a number of grants awarded to institutions and organizations for jazz-related projects. Here are a few of the more interesting grants awarded:

A $5,000 grant was awarded to the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra of Columbus to support the commission of a new work by composer/saxophonist Oliver Lake. The World Saxophone Quartet, of which Lake is a member, will premiere the new work in November at the Southern Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. Another grant awarded to support a commissioned work goes to the Stanford Jazz Workshop who have asked saxophonist Sam Rivers to score a composition for a 17-piece jazz orchestra. The Rivers work will be premiered at the 2001 Stanford Jazz Festival.

To support an annual jazz festival and other activities, Central Pennsylvania Friends of Jazz have been awarded a grant of $5,000. This money will go towards concerts, riverboat jazz cruises and several Jazzwalks in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania during the month of June.

A large grant of $50,000 goes to jazz-preservation juggernaut Jazz at Lincoln Center, Inc. in order to support the restoration and presentation of jazz masterworks. During 2001, Jazz at Lincoln Center will create transcriptions from original recordings by composers and arrangers, such as Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Count Basie and Fletcher Henderson, and perform them in New York and on tour throughout the United States.

Originally Published