Since its beginning in 2003, FONT has focused on the trumpet player and the realization of his or her creative vision, even when that vision is unconventional, experimental or out of the cultural mainstream. FONT continues to support bold and unique work by emerging and established trumpeters, and after ten years the festival is as vital as it ever was and its best years are yet to come.
With an all-volunteer board and staff primarily of artists, The Festival of New Trumpet Music has done some amazing things:
- FONT has produced ten festivals and off-season events including concerts, panel discussions and workshops.
Overall, FONT has produced over 300 concerts and engaged over 200 artists.
- FONT’s annual Award of Recognition has honored creative pioneers and revolutionary teachers who have
made remarkable contributions to the field over their lives, often without receiving any recognition ever before.
- FONT has commissioned 28 composers to create new work for the trumpet, some of them established masters
and others that had never received a commission before.
What Makes Us Unique
As a festival focused on an instrument, rather than a genre, FONT has been able to achieve a flexibility and diversity in its programming that is rare in the music world. With an equally strong tradition of great players working in the jazz and classical traditions, the instrument has had a rare history as a major part of music made in concert halls, nightclubs, dancehalls, and in the recording studios of the United States and all over the world. It has been FONT’s goal to celebrate this aspect of the instrument by creating multi-genre programs featuring trumpeters working from the broadest possible spectrum of technical and aesthetic viewpoints.
FONT has also made a real commitment to celebrating not only the instrument, but the player as well. The Festival attempts break down racial and gender barriers in the music world by supporting women and people of color in its concerts and commissions, and to bring together well-known trumpeters in the primes of their careers with emerging artists. Our audience has responded to these efforts, and a community of listeners with similar diversity have shown its support for the festival over its history.
FONT’s Lifetime Achievement Award honors creative pioneers and veterans of the instrument who have made significant contributions to the field. In a world where recognition is rare for most musicians, FONT attempts to seek out some of the most significant trumpeters who have inspired entire generations of players and to give them a platform to continue their creativity through the later stages of their careers. By embracing an entire field of musicians, FONT has helped to nurture what is now an incredibly vibrant trumpet music scene.
Plans for the Future
The 2012 festival delivered on its promise to continue the excellent, genre-breaking programming for which FONT has become known. We opened the 10th Anniversary with Stephanie Richards’ Carousel Music, featuring 12 brass players performing new music by Richards at Jane’s Carousel at Brooklyn Bridge Park. Carousel Music was FONT’s first-ever outdoor, free event in a public space. The festival also included concerts by Dave Douglas, Taylor Ho Bynum, Douglas Detrick, Rob Mazurek, Adam O’Farrill, CJ Camerieri, and more. The fall festival was the centerpiece of FONT’s work in 2012, but efforts are already underway to expand FONT into a bigger and better organization.
FONT is working to expand its organizational resources. Recent new projects include the Villagers and Trumpet concert series, a partnership with the Village Zendo and co-curated by Aaron Shragge and Douglas Detrick. FONT also plans a mentorship program, an expanded offering of collaborative artist services and more vigorous fundraising in order to expand FONT’s capacity to bring more music to audiences in New York and elsewhere.
See you in 2013!