Purchase College Celebrates 25 Years of Jazz Studies

Concerts in Westchester and NYC will feature faculty and students from the SUNY school’s acclaimed program

Purchase College.Jazz3

Pete Malinverni (at piano) performs with students in the Purchase College Jazz Studies program (Photo: Courtesy of SUNY Purchase)

The Purchase College Conservatory of Music, part of the State University of New York (SUNY) system, will celebrate the 25th anniversary of its Jazz Studies program by presenting several concerts in Westchester County (north of New York City) and NYC itself, featuring students and faculty from the program.

The performance-driven curriculum, according to a press release announcing the anniversary, “strives to emphasize the practical, bringing ‘the street into the classroom.’ With world-class performance and rehearsal facilities,” it continues, “the program enjoys an acclaimed reputation among today’s leading institutions.”

Jazz majors, the release notes, are mentored by such notable jazz artists as Pete Malinverni (piano), Todd Coolman (acoustic bass), Jon Faddis (trumpet), and David DeJesus (conductor), among many others. Alumni include vocalist Cyrille Aimée; vocalist Jo Lawry; trumpeter Bruce Harris; drummer Paul Francis; and Spike Wilner, pianist and owner of Smalls.

“It’s an honor to celebrate such an important milestone for Jazz Studies at Purchase,” said Malinverni, who heads the program, in the press release. “Our alumni are among the most talented and professionally successful in the world, as evidenced by their celebrated work in jazz clubs, ensembles, and on award-winning recordings. We are thrilled to invite the public to check out the next generation of leading jazz artists right in their own back yard.”

Highlights of the 2018-19 jazz season include a special multimedia collaboration honoring Hispanic Heritage Month featuring the Purchase Latin Jazz Orchestra and Purchase Symphony on Oct. 12, and a musical celebration of Black History Month featuring the Purchase Jazz Orchestra on Feb. 15, 2019. Special spring performances include engagements at the renowned Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola at Lincoln Center and at the legendary Blue Note and Birdland jazz clubs in New York City.

Also coinciding with the 25th anniversary, the conservatory will launch an effort to raise funds for a Friends of Jazz Endowed Scholarship Fund. All gifts will go to scholarships for students in the Jazz Studies program.

For more information on the 25th Anniversary Celebration, visit the Jazz at 25 website.


The following concerts will be held at Purchase College, 735 Anderson Hill Rd., Purchase, N.Y. All events at the Conservatory are free and open to the public. Performances at the Performing Arts Center require tickets. Visit www.purchase.edu/music for more information.

Blueprint Performance: Pete Malinverni
Wednesday, Oct. 3, 12:30 pm, Neuberger Museum of Art

Purchase Symphony and Latin Jazz Orchestras and Film Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
Friday, Oct. 12, 7:00 pm, The Performing Arts Center, PepsiCo Theatre

Blueprint Performance: David DeJesus
Wednesday, Nov. 7, 12:30 pm, Neuberger Museum of Art

Soul Voices: It’s A Family Affair
Wednesday, Nov. 14, 7:00 pm, Conservatory of Music, Recital Hall

Purchase Latin Jazz Orchestra
Wednesday, Dec. 5, 8:00 pm, Conservatory of Music, Choral Hall

Purchase Jazz Orchestra
Thursday, Dec. 6, 7:00 pm, Conservatory of Music, Recital Hall

Purchase Symphony and Jazz Orchestras Celebrate Black History Month
Friday, Feb. 15, 7:00 pm, The Performing Arts Center, Recital Hall

Soul Voices: Lift Every Voice—A Celebration of Black History Month
Wednesday, Feb. 27, 7:00 pm, Conservatory of Music, Recital Hall

Soul Voices
Wednesday, Apr. 24, 7:00 pm, Conservatory of Music, Recital Hall

Purchase Jazz Orchestra
Monday, Apr. 29, 7:00 pm, Conservatory of Music, Recital Hall

Purchase Latin Jazz Orchestra
Tuesday, Apr. 30, 8:00 pm, Conservatory of Music, Choral Hall

In addition to the events on campus, Jazz Studies students will perform in New York City this spring. For more information, visit www.purchase.edu/music.

Purchase Jazz Orchestra
The Blue Note Jazz Club
Monday, Apr. 15, 8:00 pm and 10:30 pm

Purchase Jazz Orchestra
Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, Jazz at Lincoln Center
Monday, Apr. 22, 7:30 pm and 9:30 pm

Purchase Latin Jazz Orchestra
Birdland Jazz Club (spring date TBD)

Read a JazzTimes article by SUNY Purchase Head of Jazz Studies Pete Malinverni on playing jazz in church.