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Vermont Jazz Center to launch a new semester of classes starting on September 19th


The Vermont Jazz Center will host a new ten-week session of classes beginning the week of September 19th (excepting Woman's Harmony Vocal Jazz Ensemble, which begins Tuesday September 13th). Courses include an expanded youth program for ages 10 - 16, a bebop ensemble led by Scott Mullett (Blue Note Ensemble), Anna Patton's popular Vocal Harmony Chorus and the VJC's Latin Jazz Ensemble.

This year's offerings include a new class from percussionist/musicologist and VJC Board President, Julian Gerstin. He will be introducing a broad range of percussion instruments from Africa and Latin America and their corresponding rhythms. Participants will learn basic techniques and grooves for each instrument. This "percussion ensemble" is an overview of percussion instruments from Africa and Latin America that includes active jamming on actual instruments using authentic rhythms.

Consider joining a combo and learn how to perform classic jazz compositions while being guided by one of the VJC's professional faculty. If you've never improvised, that's no problem. There are opportunities for all including classical musicians intrigued by jazz's structure and improvisational opportunities.

Sessions are 10 weeks long (except for Youth Jazz which is 8 weeks). Prices and starting dates are listed on the VJC website,

Please register by contacting Ginger Morawski at

  • Monday, 5:15 - 6:45 PM, Blue Note Ensemble Scott Mullett, instructor
  • Tuesday, 3:45 - 5:00, Youth Jazz Ensemble, Eugene Uman, instructor
  • Tuesday, 5:45 - 7:30, Women's Harmony Vocal Jazz w/Anna Patton,
  • Wednesday, 4:45 - 5:45, Latin Jazz Ensemble, Julian Gerstin and Eugene Uman, instructors
  • Wednesday, 6:00 - 7:30, VJC Sextet (full), Rob Freeberg, director
  • Thursday, 7:00 - 8:30, Latin/African Percussion Ensemble, Julian Gerstin, instructor

Information on the courses:

Blue Note Ensemble
This ensemble will focus on the repertoire from landmark Blue Note recordings of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Mullett states that this era represents for him, "the heartbeat of American jazz." The repertoire performed by this ensemble will include jazz standards and originals recorded by the bands of Art Blakey and the jazz Messengers, John Coltrane, Herbie Hancock, Cannonball Adderley, Horace Silver, Dexter Gordon, Freddie Hubbard, Lee Morgan, Hank Mobley and Wayne Shorter.

Youth Jazz Ensemble
For youth who are interested in adding improvisation to their musical toolbox. This ensemble will use simple tunes written by jazz masters Miles Davis, Horace Silver, Cannonball Adderley and others as vehicles for taking off. The tunes we will start with are simple, catch melodies that encourage participants to want to delve deeper into the jazz repertoire.

Latin Jazz Ensemble
For individuals who wish to learn and play jazz influenced by rhythms of Latin America. Emphasized styles include salsa, son, rumba, danzon, bolero and cha cha chá from Cuba (and Puerto Rico); cumbia, bambucco and porro from Colombia; bossa, samba, partido alto and samba reggae from Brazil.

Women's Jazz Harmony Vocal Ensemble
Anna Patton will lead a women's vocal ensemble that will sing arrangements of songs from the swing era as well as contemporary pieces in the jazz idiom. The ensemble will work on blend and precision in close harmonies in the style of groups like the Andrews Sisters and Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross. We will also spend some time working on aural skills and playing with chord progressions. Recommended for singers who read music and/or have quick ears. The group is not auditioned, but does take on some challenging material.

Latin and African Percussion and Rhythms
Many instruments, many styles: more than bongo and cowbell. Julian will introduce you to instruments from Ghana, Cuba, Brazil and Martinique, from drums of many kinds to bells, shakers, and scrapers.

Jam Sessions
All are invited to attend our Wednesday night jam community sessions - they're held from 8:00 - 10:00 PM every week. All levels and all instruments are invited.

Check out the VJC's website at and find class descriptions and further information on all the VJC's offerings. The phone number at the VJC is 802 254 9088 and leave a message for Ginger. You can also email Eugene Uman at No one will be turned away due to lack of funds, please call to find out about the VJC's scholarship and extended payment options. Assistance is available thanks to a generous grant from the Thompson Trust.

To Register, or for questions about scholarship assistance, contact Ginger Morawski For questions about Anna Patton's classes, contact the instructor directly: For all other inquiries contact Eugene Uman at

Vermont Jazz Center Board of Directors Welcomes New Trustees

The Vermont Jazz Center, Inc., a non-profit institution dedicated to promoting jazz music and education, is pleased to announce two new board members, Lyndall Boal and Jed Blume.

Lyndall Boal is a long-time social worker and advocate for children, health and education. She graduated from Swarthmore College in 1957, and earned an MA from the Simmons School of Social Work in 1959. She then pursued a career as a social worker in hospitals and schools, and taught at Fordham University's School of Social Work. She retired to Vermont in 2012. In addition to VJC, Ms. Boal is on the the Development Board of Grace Cottage Hospital, a founding member of, and a Guardian ad Litem appointed by Vermont Superior Court to advocate for abused, abandoned and battered children in state custody. She served on the Board of Leland and Gray Middle and High School in Townsend, VT, from 2013 to 2016.

Jed Blume is a freelance nonprofit development consultant and world music composer living in Brattleboro, Vermont. Jed has assisted the VJC with fundraising since 2014 and joined the Board in 2016. As a development/grant specialist, Jed operates from and As a musician, Jed has traveled abroad to study the rhythms of Africa and India. He draws on these influences as an accompanist and in his original compositions, specializing in Indian tabla drum and a newly invented instrument, the handpan, which combines melody and percussion.

Concert Season, 2016-2017 Vermont Jazz Center
  • Sept. 17 - Kurt Rosenwinkel Trio
  • October 1st - Caili O'Doherty Quartet (Emerging Artist Series)
  • Oct. 15 - Chico Freeman Plus-tet
  • Nov. 12 - Javon Jackson + Jimmy Cobb's Tribute to Coltrane
  • Dec. 2 - VJC Big Band + Wanda Houston - Tribute to Ella
  • Jan. 14 - Christian Scott
  • February 11 - Christian Sands Trio
  • March 18 - Sheila Jordan with Alan Broadbent
  • April 7, 8 - SOLO JAZZ PIANO FESTIVAL Stanley Cowell, Amina Figarova, Luis Perdomo, Yoko Miwa, and Miro Sprague
  • April 29th - Adam O'Farrill Quartet (Emerging Artist Series)
  • May 13 - Billy Childs Quartet
  • June 10 - Eugene Uman's Convergence Project
Stanley Cowell, April 8th, 2017

The Vermont Jazz Center is an internationally recognized institution that provides jazz education, programming and outreach. Currently in its 40th year, it was founded in 1974 by the legendary guitarist, Attila Zoller and is now run by pianist, Eugene Uman.

The VJC features a summer jazz workshop, a monthly concert series, Wednesday night jam sessions, and frequent collaborations with area schools, arts organizations and businesses.

Mission: The Vermont Jazz Center is dedicated to creating and preserving jazz through the presentation of workshops, concerts, and instruction to a broad constituency of artists, students, and the general public.

Keep in touch
Upcoming Concerts
We Four, Javon Jackson and Jimmy Cobb Celebrate the Music of John Coltrane
Saturday, November 12th, 8:00 PM
The Vermont Jazz Center Big Band and Wanda Houston - A Tribute to Ella
Friday, December 2nd, 8:00 PM
Christian Scott Ensemble
Saturday, January 14th, 8:00 PM
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