As part of our 20th season, we are proud to present this world premiere in collaboration with The Owl Music Parlor. The Dave Douglas Quintet with Jon Irabagon, Matt Mitchell, Matt Penman, Rudy Royston will give the first public performances of their new album Songs of Ascent (Greenleaf Music). In the second set they will support Oren Bloedow in a VSOP performance of new songs and concepts.
After 20 seasons of promoting contemporary, emerging, and pioneering new music involving the trumpet, it was electrifying, and gratifying, to present another all new season in this long running series. One in which we honored Enrico Rava with our Award of Recognition — I had the supreme honor of getting to interview Enrico, definitely a fun listen. In addition, we got to honor two esteemed colleagues: board member Jeremy Pelt tipped his hat to Dizzy Reece, and Executive Dean of the College of Performing Arts at The New School Richard Kessler spoke warmly of Doc Severinsen from our community of trumpeters and music makers. Long overdue honors.
Virtual Shows! One of the things from our Brass Without Borders series’ that developed during the pandemic times — we can invite and commission artists from all around the world! Our opening night featured three amazing composer/trumpeters from Ukraine. They each contributed original work, stunningly performed and sensitively captured on film. Thanks to Dennis Adu, Yakiv Tsvietinskyi, and Dima Bondarev.
Live Shows!The Owl is a new-ish venue in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, Brooklyn that I was unfamiliar with. I recommend it highly — it’s owned and operated by the singer, songwriter, guitarist and old pal Oren Bloedow. Trumpeter Sonny Singh presented his spiritually infectious new work there, from his album Chardi Kala. Opening was Laurie Frink Career Grant co-winner Alexandra Ridout, originally from the UK. Both sets were warm and wise. The intimate audience ate it up. It felt so great to be among them.
The New School on West 13th Street hosted two important in-person shows for us! The David Sanford Big Band played Sanford’s own riotous music, as well as a new piece from new-to-big-band-or-so-she-says composer Du Yun. Brass heavy and clamorous, the show jolted the packed house into prolonged applause. Trumpet soloist Hugh Ragin made a rare New York appearance. The band was kind of enough to also play a brand new work of mine, entitled “Gods of Guilt”, in reference to Michael Connelly’s fictional LA detective Hieronymus Bosch. This was a really special night with lots of music luminaries and friends in the house.
The following night we presented two tributes. Trumpeter Lessie Vonner honored us with a program dedicated to trumpeter and vocalist and (as I did not know) composer Cynthia Robinson of Sly and The Family Stone. The band was grooving hard, and in addition to vocal participation there were several bouts of spontaneous clapping to the beat with an absolute 100% participation rate. In addition, Aaron Shragge gave us a tribute to recently passed trumpeter Jon Hassell. Playing a specially modified slide trumpet and electric effects, Aaron really got at the vibe and atmosphere of Hassell’s work. Inviting Nadje Noordhuis up as a special guest added to the magical aura of the gig. Nadje had shared a masterclass with us earlier in the day and it was great to hear her play. Nadje, along with Lois Martin, is an integral part of the Laurie Frink Career Grant board. The second co-winner this year is Jason Charos. Winners receive crucial support toward their educational goals.
Live Music! Super thrilled to present alongside The Jazz Gallery. Supremely expressive trumpeter Keyon Harrold put together a project called Gen Next and brought a whole bunch of incredibly talented young players to the stage. A rousing display of craft and heart. Loved being in the room with that energy and that music.
All of these sets remain in the archive, along with previous years, at Festival of New Trumpet Music.
Festival of New Trumpet Music is a project I work on all year long with a dedicated and talented crew — and an all volunteer board. Visit our website to read the history. We’re just elated to be able to support the field. No trumpeter ever called to give me a gig when I first came to town. We’ve aimed to change that and support each other. We’ve also aimed to expand the perception of who a trumpeter can be and what they can do. And through their music, the artists presented here expanded the idea of what roles the instrument can inhabit in music. We plan to continue supporting art and artists. Please join us if you can!
Thanks for listening. Dave Douglas, director, FONT Music
Yesterday we lost one of our community. A unique creative force and beautiful soul is gone far too soon.
“Jaimie Branch could conjure a world of personal expression with her trumpet, sounding brash and conflagratory one moment, bleary and contemplative the next. What she always conveyed with her horn, in any setting, was an absolute whole-body conviction. One reason she became a beloved linchpin of the creative music community over the last decade was this spirit of gutsy intensity. (…) She was a welcome presence on the Festival of New Trumpet Music in New York, which presented her as early as 2007, and on multiple occasions since.” – Nate Chinen, NPR
“She brought us so many insights into how the trumpet could engage in the music differently,” trumpeter and composer Dave Douglas, the founder of Festival of New Trumpet Music, tells NPR. “She had a vision for synthesizing the voices of her inspirations and taking them to new levels no one had thought possible. It’s a tragic loss for our community.”
We will miss you immensely
“All the music that ever was and ever will be is here now. It exists in a cloud just above our heads and when we play, we pluck it out of the ether for a lil while before sending it back up.” – Jaimie Branch
In September, we’re celebrating our 20th season and the return to live concerts in New York. The program of the anniversary festival is extremely diverse, including both established artists and new talents. The diversity is also reflected in the variety of music.
In addition to live concerts, the “Brass Without Border” series will continue, allowing us to present artists from around the world at the festival.
Twenty years ago, FONT Music began at the bar of Tonic, where Roy Campbell, Jr. and I conspired all those years ago. To spread the diversity of people playing the instrument, to engage in new ideas of what trumpet music is and can be, to honor great pioneers of the instrument in our community.
In the two decades since, our grassroots non-profit has created hundreds of meaningful social and musical experiences for the trumpet community and beyond, and we’ve celebrated ideas that are new, different, in and out, for every step of the way.
Since 2003, the Festival of New Trumpet Music has presented:
over 600 trumpet players
over 300 premiers of new pieces and ensembles
over 40 commissions of new music
reached over 100,000+ audience members
Today we celebrate these milestones, and we reaffirm our commitment to diversity and inclusion. In 2021, we reached gender parity, male and female artists were presented in equal numbers. This important development continues the festival’s dedication to the broadest possible view of what constitutes trumpet music. There is always more work to do, but this is a wonderful development for the field.
Our 2021 virtual shows were wonderful, with new groups formed and new music presented. Hermon Mehari, Balkan Paradise Orchestra, Axel Dörner, Milena Casado, Kalí Rodriguez-Peña, Gunhild Seim, Sarah Wilson, Richard Nant, Birgit Ulher, Verneri Pohjola, Audrey Powne, Suzan Veneman, Lukas Frei, Sheila Maurice-Grey, Lina Allemano, Emily Kuhn, D’DAT Indigenous Performance Productions feat. Delbert Anderson, Adam Cuthbert, Mao Sone, and Mary Elizabeth Bowden were among trumpeters who brought great new music to our events.
We awarded legendary Randy Brecker with our adulation.
Yazz Ahmed presented a live masterclass in partnership with Seattle JazzEd, El Paso Jazz Girls, the Louis Armstrong House Museum, WIJO (Women in Jazz Organization), and Jazz St. Louis Education.
All together FONT Music 2021 reached over 16,000 people and was viewed over 20,000 times for a total of 51,000 minutes!
And we continued the mission that began at the bar of Tonic, where Roy Campbell, Jr. and I conspired all those years ago. To share the diversity of people playing the instrument, to engage in new ways the idea of what trumpet music is and can be, to honor great pioneers of the instrument in our community.
The strength of our community is its diversity of artistic voices and the spaces in which they are presented. Together, we explore the common ground to be found in the juxtaposition of style and genre; culture and identity.
Festival Of New Trumpet Music 2021 announces Brass Without Borders, Sept 8-15, 2021
A Global Celebration Of The Extraordinary Diversity In Current Music For The Trumpet
For almost 20 years, the Festival Of New Trumpet Music has embraced innovation and the unheard. Led by Dave Douglas, this small festival defies stylistic categories and presents exciting music centered around the trumpet each year, in previous years at clubs and stages around New York City.
The pandemic-related all-digital version of 2020 was the occasion to be able to present trumpeters from all over the world for the first time. Now the format Brass Without Borders has become the theme of this year’s festival and once again brings together the worldwide trumpet community, at least virtually.
Festival of New Trumpet Music 2021 is particularly proud to support gender parity on the instrument and in the field. For the first time, male and female artists will be presented in equal numbers. This important development continues the festival’s dedication to the broadest possible view of what constitutes trumpet music, and who can make it. There is always more work to do, but this is a wonderful development for the field.
The annual Award of Recognition will be presented this year to trumpeter and composer Randy Brecker for his longtime contributions to the field.
Rounding out the exciting program is a workshop with British-Bahraini trumpet player Yazz Ahmed, which will be shared with Seattle JazzEd, El Paso Jazz Girls, Jazz St. Louis and other educational institutions from around the nation.
The final program will be announced on July 1st, 2021 and includes Axel Doerner (Germany), Verneri Pohjola (Finland), Suzan Veneman (Netherlands), Lukas Frei (Switzerland), Sheila Maurice-Grey (UK), Balkan Paradise Orchestra (Spain), Hermon Mehari (France/USA), Delbert Anderson and Indigenous Contemporary Arts Group (New Mexico), Lina Allemano (Canada), Mary Elizabeth Bowden (USA), Adam Cuthbert (USA), Emily Kuhn (USA) among others.
The entire 2020 festival is freely accessible in our archive at fontmusic.org – including a very special episode celebrating Baikida Carroll.
Thanks for joining us this year at the Festival of New Trumpet Music. We sincerely hope you enjoyed this entirely online edition of our celebration of the instrument. We plan to continue commissioning new players and new projects. With your help, we will be back with more. If you can, please consider donating.
Thanks to this great community of musicians for all their dedication and vision. And thanks to you — so much — for listening and being part of this community.
In eternal gratitude for Roy Campbell, Jr.
Dave Adewumi, Yazz Ahmed, Aurélien Barnes, John-Michael Bradford, Summer Camargo, Baikida Carroll, Cam Clark, Ray Colom, Tomasz Dąbrowski, Dave Douglas, Laurie Frink, Noah Halpern, Bruce Harris, Freddie Hendrix, Ashton Hines, Nabaté Isles, Ingrid Jensen, Laura Jurd, Christine Kamau, Cole Kamen-Green, Ellen Kirkwood, Noel Langley, Mariano Loiácono, Riley Mulherkar, Satoru Ohashi, Ashlin Parker, Nicholas Payton, Jeremy Pelt, Reid Poole, Michael Rodriguez, Chloe Rowlands, Bria Skonberg, Rachel Therrien, Ivan Trujillo, Lessie Vonner, Brandon Woody, Raphael Zimmermann, Ndabo Zulu
FONT MUSlC 2020 PRODUCTlON TEAM
Dave Douglas, Tyler McDiarmid, Lukas Frei, Riley Mulherkar, Amy Norton, Suzannah Kincannon, Richard Johnson
FONT MUSlC BOARD
Stephanie Richards, Jeremy Pelt, John Blevins, David Adewumi, Ingrid Jensen, Nabate Isles, Tom Anderson, Lewis Flip Barnes, Taylor Barnett, Taylor Ho Bynum, Richard Kessler, Richard Loyd, John McNeil, Nadje Noordhuis, Aaron Shragge, Erol Tamerman, Rick Gutierrez, Heather Sessler
FONT MUSlC gratefully acknowledges the support of
PLUS SUPPORT FROM
Jeff Beal, Michael Goldstein, Joey O’Loughlin, Rick & Erin Charitable Fund, Silicon Valley Foundation, and additional donations from listeners and supporters.
Two months from today, we are launching a very special edition of the Festival Of New Trumpet Music Online. Due to the current situation our festival will be all digital. Over 10 days we will present lots of exciting new music by trumpeters from near and far. Performances will be complemented by live talks and a workshop. We hope you will join us! Check out our website in the coming weeks for further information or sign up for our newsletter.
On May 1st Bandcamp waives its share for the second time. This is a great time to buy music and support musicians. This date is also the release date for the latest album of our artistic director Dave Douglas.
Help us honor Baikida Carroll’s contribution to our instrument and community as we present the 2020 FONT Music Award Of Recognition, acknowledging Carroll as one of the most original and creative jazz artists in the world today. Carroll’s restless experimentation and stylistic versatility are an apt fit with our mission.
Festival of New Trumpet Music 2020, September 9-17
Mark your calendars, full program details including Bria Skonberg, Marcus Printup, The Westerlies, Freddie Hendrix, Rachel Therrien, and Laurie Frink Career Grant award, will be announced soon.
Along with all of New York, and the world, FONT Music looks to the reopening of music venues by September and will follow events closely.