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Friday, March 23 • 2:15pm - 3:45pm
Roundtable: The Church of What’s Happening Now: Improv 2012 and the Cosmopolitan Truth

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This gathering will examine  the economics, aesthetics  and ethnicities of improvisational music culture in present-day NYC, with special emphasis on how older definitions of jazz have been provoked, transformed and morphed by contemporary urban artists and audiences. The role of digital technologies and social media will be in the mix too, as well as race, class and gender issues and the impact of gentrification.

With: Marika Hughes, Vijay Iyer, José James, Butch Morris, and Mazz Swift.

Moderator: Greg Tate


Marika Hughes

Brooklyn-based cellist Marika Hughes was born in NYC to a musical family. She is the granddaughter of famed cellist Emanuel Feuermann and she grew up in her parents jazz club, Burgundy, on the Upper West Side. Marika recently debuted as a bandleader with her album The Simplest Thing (2011). She also released Afterlife Music Radio - 11 New Pieces for Solo Cello (2011) with compositions written for her by Carla Kihlstedt, Nasheet Waits, Eyvind Kang... Read More →

Vijay Iyer

Grammy-nominated composer-pianist Vijay Iyer was described by Pitchfork as "one of the most interesting and vital young pianists in jazz today," Iyer has released fifteen albums as a leader, most recently Tirtha (2011), Solo (2010), and the multiple-award-winning Historicity (2009). A polymath whose career has spanned the sciences, the humanities and the arts, Iyer holds a B.S. in Mathematics and Physics from Yale University.   Abstract... Read More →

Butch Morris

Lawrence D. "Butch" Morris is recognized internationally as the principal theorist and practitioner in the evolution of Conduction®, and a leading innovator in the confluence of jazz, new music, improvisation and contemporary classical music. His work redefines the roles of composer, conductor, arranger and performer, and bridges the gap between the composer, interpreter and improviser.   Abstract: | | "The Church of What's... Read More →

Mazz Swift

Native New Yorker and solo artist Mazz Swift, performing under the name MazzMuse, combines elements of classical, folk, electronica, jazz and otherwise free improvisational music to create a complete musical experience. She is a singer and Juilliard trained violinist (playing both electric and acoustic instruments) who brings her passion for creating true compositions in the spur of the moment to audiences around the world.   Abstract... Read More →

Greg Tate

Greg Tate is a writer and musician who lives in Harlem. His books include Flyboy In The Buttermilk, Midnight Lightning: Jimi Hendrix and The Black Experience, and Everything But The Burden: What Black People Are Taking from White Culture. He is currently working on a book about James Brown for FS&G. Flyboy 2: The Greg Tate Reader will one day be published by Duke University Press.   Abstract: | | "The Church of What's Happening Now... Read More →

Friday March 23, 2012 2:15pm - 3:45pm
The Global Center for Academic and Spiritual Life (GC) 238 Thompson Street, New York, NY 10012