Recognition And Accomplishments
In 2017 …
- A student won 1st place at Jacksonville Festival Piano Competition
- Director of Operations Lori Montague was interviewed on the “Giblin Report” by Assemblyman Thomas Giblin, which will air across the state on public access TV
- A drummer + trumpeter student was honored with Downbeat Magazine’s 2017 Student Music Award for Jazz Soloist
- A keyboardist student made a guest appearance on “Ellen” and featured in USA Today
- President & founder Melissa Walker participated in a panel discussion about residencies at Chamber Music America
- A student in our Jazz House Vocal Academy won 1st place on “Showtime at the Apollo” which aired nationwide on FOX-TV
- A Jazz House Kids student quintet and our senior manager of education and student programs, Allison Russo was featured on “Wonderama” airing nationally
- JazzConnect 2017 featured Melissa Walker as a session moderator and Ted Chubb, director of the Jazz House Summer Workshop, as panelist
- Artistic director Christian McBride received the Bruce Lundvall Visionary Award from the Jazz Connect Conference, the first bassist to be recognized with the honor
- The Jazz House Kids Organ Messengers directed by Julius Tolentino performed at Jazz Education Network (JEN)'s annual conference in New Orleans
- FOUR Jazz House Kids students were selected as members of the 2017 GRAMMY Camp - Jazz Session
- The Jazz House Big Band and one of Messengers combos earned coveted spots in the National Charles Mingus High School Competition & Festival. Jazz House Kids students received two soloist awards and the big band was awarded Best Saxophone Section
- Jazz House Kids alum Julian Lee was honored with a Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award
- Montclair Jazz Festival was nominated for a Jersey Arts People’s Choice Award, third year in a row
In 2016 …
- SEVEN Jazz House Big Band students traveled to Peru for the second year for performances, masterclasses, jam sessions. The trip was sponsored and supported by the United States Embassy in Peru and the Instituto Cultural Peruano Norteamericano (ICPNA)
- Melissa Walker + Christian McBride were honored with a Champion of the People Award at the Family Connections 2016 Annual Gala
- A longtime Jazz House Kids student won the Apollo Theater Amateur Night and 1st place on “Showtime at the Apollo” which aired nationwide on FOX-TV
- TWO Jazz House Kids students received YoungArts Awards from the National YoungArts Foundation. A longtime student received both a Composition Award and an Honorable Mention in the jazz category. A Jazz House Summer Workshop participant was named a YoungArts Finalist
- A Jazz House Kids saxophonist was selected as a member of the 2016 GRAMMY Camp - Jazz Session
- The Jazz House Big Band participated in Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition and Festival and took home 10 awards: Outstanding Rhythm Section, Best Overall Saxophone Section and 8 Soloist Awards
- The Jazz House Organ Messengers won 1st Place in the Specialized Combo Category at the National Charles Mingus High School Competition & Festival, and took home the Spirit Award plus 4 Soloist Awards
- A Jazz House Kids student won 1st Place in the Montreux Jazz Artists Foundation Piano Competition
- A Jazz House Kids saxophonist was featured at the Berkshire Jazz Week Jazz Prodigy Concert
- Jazz House Kids alum Isaiah Thompson performed at JALC’s season opening concert, “Handful of Keys: a Century of Jazz Piano”
- The Board of Chosen Freeholders recognized Jazz House Kids at its Essex County Celebrates Youth event
- Director of Operations, Lori Montague, was honored with a Giblin Association Community Service Award
- Melissa Walker was awarded the Woman on F.I.R.E. Award by the Montclair Alumnae Chapter and Delta Torch Fund - at the Jabberwock Coalition Gala
- Melissa Walker and Christian McBride received the Martin Luther King Leadership award at Stand & Deliver Night of Eloquence
- Montclair Jazz Festival was nominated for a Jersey Arts People’s Choice Award
- TWO Jazz House students and ONE Jazz House Summer Workshop participant were selected for the GRAMMY Camp - Jazz Session
- The Jazz House Big Band was selected as a finalist for the National Charles Mingus High School Competition & Festival
- The Jazz House Big Band won 2nd Place at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Essentially Ellington Competition and Festival
- A longtime Jazz House Kids student was featured at the Berkshire Jazz Week Jazz Prodigy Concert
- Our Montclair Jazz Festival was nominated for the Jersey Arts People’s Choice Award.
- FOUR Jazz House Kids students were selected from 10,000 applicants to participate in the prestigious National YoungArts Week. They were among just six students nationwide chosen as National YoungArts scholars in jazz. THREE Jazz House Kids were among only 60 students nationwide nominated as U.S. Presidential Scholars in the Arts.
- The Jazz House Messengers, directed by Oscar Perez, took 2nd place in the Next Generation Competition, Open Small Group Conglomerate Category at the Monterey Jazz Festival. Two students won Outstanding Soloist recognition.
- The Jazz House Messengers, directed by Bruce Williams, were invited to play at the distinguished Tri-C DownBeat Invitational Showcase in Cleveland
- FOUR students were selected to participate in the GRAMMY Camp - Jazz Session, representing more than 12% of the entire group of 32 students from across the country.
- Melissa Walker received an NJBIZ Best 50 Women in Business Award honoring women who have made headlines in their field.
- The Jazz House Big Band was selected to participate in Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition and Festival. The Jazz House Big Band won 2nd place for the second year in a row and took 12 awards for outstanding soloists – the most individual awards given to any one band. The Big Band also was awarded outstanding Pep Section.
- The Jazz House Big Band won Best Big Band, Specialized School Category, in the National Charles Mingus High School Competition & Festival. Students received 6 Soloist Awards
- For the second straight year, a 10-year-old Jazz House Kids student was the youngest winner of ASCAP’s this distinguished Herb Alpert Young Composers Award
- The Jazz House Big Band, directed by Julius Tolentino, collaborated with the world-class New Jersey Ballet to premiere four new works interpreting music by New Jersey composers
- The Jazz House Big Band won 2nd Place at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition and Festival from among 15 finalists and 96 entries from across the country. Students received 8 Soloist Awards.
- Mingus 2013 The Jazz House Big Band won four Outstanding Student Soloist Awards
- Jazz House Kids students won 3 DownBeat Student Jazz Awards. One student was recognized in the Junior High School Jazz Category, and a second student was cited for Outstanding Performance for Composition for a second consecutive year. A third student received an award for Original Composition – Lead Sheet in the High School Outstanding Performance Category.
- A Jazz House Kids student won a Davidson Fellows $25,000 Scholarship, one of the world’s most prestigious student awards, and became the first student in history to win for jazz performance. Only 20 fellows nationwide were selected.
- A 10-year-old Jazz House Kids student became the youngest winner of the ASCAP Foundation Herb Alpert Young Composers Award.
- NINE Jazz House Kids students were selected for the New Jersey Association of Jazz Educators All State Big Band.
- Melissa Walker received the Jazz Journalists Association’s Jazz Hero Award, given to “activists, advocates, altruists, aiders and abettors of jazz who have had significant impact in their local communities.”
- Melissa Walker was honored with the BlueWaveNJ Community Service Award
- Melissa Walker was presented with the African American Classical Music Award by the Northern NJ Chapter National Alumnae Association of Spelman College
- The Jazz House Big Band won Best Big Band, Specialized School Category and Best Small Group in the National Charles Mingus High School Competition & Festival plus 8 Soloist Awards
- Jazz House Kids was awarded Best Big Band in Specialized School Category; Best Small Group in Specialized Combo and eight Outstanding Student Soloist Awards at the Charles Mingus Competition
- Jazz House Kids was honored by Newark Public Schools for 10 years of a successful partnership
- TWO Jazz House Kids students were co-winners of the Downbeat Magazine’s High School Jazz Category; another student was cited for Outstanding Performance for composition
- TWO Jazz House Kids students were selected for the GRAMMY Camp - Jazz Session from hundreds of applicants nationwide
- Melissa Walker was presented with a American Red Cross Award by the Montclair-Glen Ridge-Nutley Chapter in recognition of significant impact on the quality of life through volunteer and humanitarian efforts
- Melissa Walker was presented with a Muse for Montclair Award by the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Montclair for outstanding contributions building artistic community