Community Productions

2003: The Essence of Jazz: Conversations With Illinois Artists


A dictionary would define jazz as "American music often characterized by syncopation and polyphonic ensemble playing."  But for musicians who have spent their lives performing, jazz can't be so simply defined.  University Laboratory High School students talk with local jazz musicians about their craft.

This program is broken up into three parts, which can be heard on the left-hand side of this page:

 Part 1: Don Heitler is a full-time musician known in the Urbana jazz community for his piano arrangements.  Martin Geiger asked Heitler about what jazz means in his life.

Part 2: For Vicky Capo, jazz is a method of transport -- taking her to places she's never been. Capo says jazz has the power to break down racial and cultural barriers.  Alex Cahill asks Capo what she feels when she sings.

Part 3: Guitarist Jordan Kaye says as a child he occasionally slipped his guitar under the covers at night to play.  He says he's influenced by some of the earliest jazz artists who have been largely ignored by many modern musicians.  Stefanie Austin asks Kaye about the artists he most admires.