In New Orleans, music is handed from generation to generation, often from father to child at a very young age. Musical traditions are not written in a book, rather music in New Orleans is a living, breathing, evolving tradition. The music of New Orleans is learned from an older generation, and their knowledge embodies and possesses the spirit of New Orleans.
To assist in providing a younger generation with the living spirit of New Orleans music, Preservation Hall has created a program for young musicians to learn the essential elements of New Orleans' venerable brass band tradition.
To donate to this wonderful cause, please click the "Donate" button below.
Open to students between the ages of 10 and 17, The Preservation Hall Junior Jazz Band is a free, weekly-meeting class, led by Program Director Carl LeBlanc, guitarist/banjoist and member of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band.
The Preservation Hall Junior Jazz Band is taught repertoire, parade marching and dress, instrument techniques, and music theory as it relates to traditional brass band music. In addition, the program performs at a variety of musical outlets throughout the city, including second-lines, festivals, and along-side their mentors at Preservation Hall.
Prospective students should be able to read music, be able to play their major and minor scales, and should either be able to provide their own instrument or a mouthpiece to play on instruments provided by Preservation Hall. We are currently accepting students who play traditional brass band instruments such as trumpet, trombone, clarinet, saxophone, tuba, and drums.
“From the day I was born, I have been in the company of musicians. My father Allan was a tuba player and my mother Sandra played piano. It was their appreciation for New Orleans Jazz that first brought them to New Orleans in 1960. They found a community that embraced family, a unique cultural history and diversity. In 1961, they converted a small art gallery in Preservation Hall, a space where local retired and aging musicians could play; it became a natural extension of New Orleans – it became its own neighborhood. Here, musicians, artists and patrons often brought their children and grandchildren to receive the same love and respect they would amongst their own family members. As a child, I felt like I had dozens of grandparents watching over me, answering my questions, reprimanding me when I was bad and teaching me an appreciation of music and life. We wish to SHARE that sense of community, life and music that is an inseparable part of New Orleans and integral part of Preservation Hall." -Ben Jaffe, Creative Director
Without our traditions and music, we are not New Orleans. Passing on the musical traditions to a younger generation helps to protect and perpetuate New Orleans’ rich musical heritage and culture. This unique program affords serious music students the opportunity to witness and experience the mechanics of being a professional musician in an environment that encourages and prioritizes the living tradition of New Orleans.
Parents of students interested in this program should email to schedule an audition.
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