As part of a yearly national event sponsored by the Smithosonian Institute, Philadelphia will make April, 2011 Jazz Appreciation Month in the City of Brotherly Love. Standing on the northwest corner of the Dilworth Plaza, the city's Chief Cultural Officer, Gary P. Steuer, announced the event to the press. Plying their trade in still wintry cold weather, three members of the Arpeggio Jazz Ensemble, Warren Oree
, leader, played some cool music in their overcoats, as Steuer unveiled the large banner that will adorn the City Hall archways in April. He noted that Mayor Michael Nutter will speak to the jazz community on April 11th, and that numerous jazz events will be held throughout the city during all of April.
Melanie Johnson of the Philadelphia Jazz Coalition and Jim Gardner, head of the Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz spoke briefly about the jazz tradition in Philadelphia and the various venues where jazz can be heard, as well as places like the Clef Club and the John Coltrane Museum where jazz trends and players are remembered with various exhibitions as well as performances. The Lifeline Music Coalition is also playing a leading role in the festivities.
Steuer also noted that this year's mammoth Independence Day celebration, Welcome America," will feature jazz, acknowledging the significant role that jazz has played in American and Philadelphian music and culture through the decades.
Longtime friends of All About Jazz, Graziella D'Amelio of Lifeline Coalition, Suzanne Cloud
of the Jazz Bridge, and Rick Lawn of the University of the Arts were present at the news conference, along with many other members of the jazz community and news media.