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Montclair Jazz Festival For the Kids


Jazz House Kids is a grassroots jazz school for young people which has gained a reputation as one of the nation’s preeminent arts education and performance organizations.

“We use jazz, America’s home grown music, as a teaching tool to develop who we are as people,” said Jazz House Kids founder Melissa Walker

Jazz House Kids was created to provide young people with guidance and a positive influence while teaching them how to play and create music.

“It’s a unique experience where there are all ages and all levels,” said Ted Thubb, director of the kids’ workshop.  “We some of the best young musicians in the world playing jazz and learning about jazz.  The first week is all about preparation and the second week is all about performance.  The finale is the Montclair Jazz Festival which really serves as their final celebration for all of their hard work for those two weeks.”

The Montclair Jazz Festival will take place on August 12 in Nishuane Park. It continues to get bigger by drawing more and more people since it started eight years ago.

“We didn’t even have a piano at the festival at that time,” said festival director and world renowned bassist Christian McBride.  “As time progressed we started to invite more people to come and play for our students.  As artistic director, my vision was to never let this festival get away from its original concept.  That concept was to feature our children.  This is for them.”

The likes of Cyrus Chestnut and Dee Dee Bridgewater will share special performances alongside students at the Montclair Jazz Festival.  It’s free to the public and open every one starting at 12PM on August 12.