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Community Conversations

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Community Panel—Face the Music: Confronting Racism with American Music. Photo courtesy of Rhapsody.

Join us for a series of free panels hosted on Saturday afternoons at 2pm during the festival. 2021 offers a unique opportunity to examine the structures in place within our jazz community—from education spaces, to jam session culture, to the performance stage, and beyond— through thoughtful community dialogue. 

Saturday October 16, 2pm PDT
Taking a Good Hard Look at Ourselves:
How a culture of self-reflection transformed
internal systems and alleviated barriers to equity
Free! Livestream via Zoom/ Details forthcoming

Promoting a culture of community feedback and internal self-reflection, Seattle JazzED confronted the organizational systems that inadvertently excluded the very students they sought to serve. During this session, JazzED team members—Kelly Clingan, Ricardo Luna, and Robert Babs—will share their unique perspectives, expertise, and personal experiences of three instances in which JazzED made significant financial and programmatic shifts to address the impact of racism and economic injustice on organizational operations, including a program location change to address transportation barriers; a transition from a financial aid model to a “pay what you can” strategy; and curriculum overhaul to address inherent educational systems bias. Moderated by Laurie de Koch.


Saturday October 30, 2pm PDT
Face the Music: Confronting Racism with
American Music
Free! Livestream via Zoom/ Details forthcomin
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American music contains powerful lessons for understanding systemic oppression in our country. The stories of early jazz masters provides a jumping-off point to discuss how American music can reveal a new awareness of injustice, which when acknowledged can fuel those with privilege to stand with minority and excluded populations. Face the Music panelists—Joe Seamons, Liana Green, Kelly Clingan, and Reese Tanimura—will engage the audience in a discussion of how systemic racism crosses paths with music, and present tools for musicians and fans to help dismantle the oppressive structure. Moderated by Valerie Diaz Leroy.

Saturday November 6, 2pm PDT
Why Mentorship Matters Free!
Livestream via Zoom / Details forthcoming

The cycle of mentorship has perpetuated jazz music for more than 100 years, but is in noticeable decline in Seattle. The mentorship culture is a key element to the health and vitality of any jazz community, and its decline has had a chilling effect on excellence, participation, and innovation with regards to jazz music. This panel—comprised of Ray Vega, Dawn Clement, Marc Seales, and moderated by trumpeter Thomas Marriott—will discuss the ways in which mentorship can affect musical outcomes, strengthen community, and stimulate audience growth. They will discuss all the ways in which mentorship matters and how we can make it stronger locally.

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October 1, 2021

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