Berklee jazz fest will hit Strand stage on July 26

By 
Brianna Macgregor, Special to the Reporter
Jul. 10, 2013

Highlighting Uphams Corner’s ethnic blend and artistic history, a concert showcasing jazz and Caribbean music will be performed on Friday, July 26, at 7:30 p.m. at the Strand Theater. Produced by Berklee College of Music, the free Jazz Fest with a taste of the Caribbean features three Berklee groups with students from all over the world.

The student groups include: New Voices in Jazz 2, offering traditional and modern jazz standards; Caribbean Jazz Fusion Ensemble, bringing a blend of traditional and modern Caribbean rhythms; and the Music of the Dominican Republic Ensemble, playing Merengue and Bachata music.

Renowned jazz drummer and Berklee Ensemble Department Chair Ron Savage is the concert’s producer.
The concert will be funded by a $480,000 grant given to the Boston Foundation by ArtPlace, a national foundation that awards grants to foster arts and culture. Berklee’s Office of Community Affairs and Campus Engagement, as well as other city and arts groups, received portions of the grant to produce cultural activities around the historic Strand Theater and the Uphams Corner MBTA commuter rail station.

The concert, produced by a partnership between The Boston Foundation and the Berklee Office of Community Affairs and Campus Engagement, is just one of a series of planned events that aim to revitalize arts and ethnic culture in Uphams Corner. Additionally, Berklee plans to involve itself in other aspects of the community. The Music Education Department will present KidsJam sessions, and the Music Therapy Department will work with patients in the dementia unit at Uphams Corner Elder Services. The Professional Music Department will send students from the Jazz Revelation Records label to perform at various events.