Colburn Playlist: Amplify Artists 2021

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Colburn’s Amplify Series celebrates the careers of artists of color with week-long residencies that will amplify them as well as the artists that they’ve drawn inspiration from in their own work. The inaugural class includes violist Nokothula Ngwenyama (Community School ’93), bassoonist Andrew Brady (Conservatory ’13), bassist Marlon Martinez (Conservatory ’15), and former New York City Ballet member and incoming Dean of the Trudl Zipper Dance Institute, Silas Farley.

Learn more about the works written and performed by Black artists that have inspired them.

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Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: 5 Fantasiestücke, Op.5, No. 1, Prelude

Shared by Nokuthula Ngwenyama
The Catalyst Quartet, which serves as principal faculty at the Sphinx Performance Academy, combines a serious commitment to diversity and education with a passion for contemporary works. The first volume of their ongoing project to spotlight artists that have been sidelined due to race and/or gender, UNCOVERED Vol. 1, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, features Stewart Goodyear on piano and Anthony McGill on clarinet. Coleridge-Taylor was a composer born to an English woman and an African father in 1875.

Billy Strayhorn: “Lush Life”

Shared by Marlon Martinez
“Billy Strayhorn (1915-1967) was a prolific jazz composer and pianist. He composed famous jazz standards associated with Duke Ellington, like Take The ‘A’ Train, Chelsea Bridge, and Satin Doll. Although he was a big band orchestrator, here is a rare recording of him singing ‘Lush Life,’ his torch ballad which has been covered by artists like Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Queen Latifah and Lady Gaga.” – Marlon Martinez

Imani Winds: “Bruits: II.force”

Shared by Nokuthula Ngwenyama and Andrew Brady
“Imani Winds’ latest album release…features a narrative centered on the history and possible future of Blacks in America as well as other marginalized groups. The second track on the album ‘force’ is a powerful recitation of the ‘Stand Your Ground Law’ that was used in determining the outcome of the trial of Trayvon Martin’s murder in 2012. This album makes the listener confront issues that have plagued America throughout history. It is available on Spotify, but I encourage listeners to buy the album through Bright Shiny Things.” – Andrew Brady

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, Ballade for Violin and Piano in C minor, Op. 73

Shared by Nokuthula Ngwenyama
Nokuthula Ngwenyama, Violin
Althea Waites, Piano
Violist Nokuthula Ngwenyama was violinist for Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s Ballade for Violin and Piano in C Minor, Op. 73 during the 150th Anniversary Emancipation Proclamation Concert co-presented by KUSC Classical Radio & MusicUNTOLD in 2012.

Taylor Stanley on The Runaway

Shared by Silas Farley
Taylor Stanley dances and speaks about his work in Kyle Abraham’s ballet The Runaway, which was performed at the New York City Ballet in 2019. “Taylor Stanley and Kyle Abraham are two extraordinary artists of our time. Their collaboration in this particular ballet is a marvel.” – Silas Farley

Stanley Clarke at Sweetwater

Shared by Marlon Martinez
“Stanley Clarke (1951-present), is a Grammy-winning bassist and film composer who is the first jazz-fusion bassist to headline tours worldwide. Equally virtuosic on acoustic and electric bass, Clarke co-founded Return To Forever with Chick Corea, and collaborated with many legends of jazz including Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Art Blakey, and Tony Williams. A mentor of mine since I was 16, and a black role model for me, Clarke encouraged me to blend my classical background with my jazz playing, to create my own diverse music.” – Marlon Martinez

Marlon Martinez: “Fay”

Shared by Marlon Martinez
“’Fay’ is a composition debuted on my jazz album Yours Truly (2017). I wrote this piece while studying at the Colburn Conservatory (2009-2015), and it features my friends who are alumni from the CSPA: Isaac Wilson (piano), Jacob Scesney (saxophone) and Cam Johnson (drums). “Fay” represents perseverance and aiming higher, spiritually. We are continually searching and never seem to settle.” – Marlon Martinez

Stewart Goodyear: “Callaloo,” III. Ballad

Shared by Andrew Brady
Chineke Orchestra
Wayne Marshall, Conductor
“This Caribbean suite for piano and orchestra by Canadian pianist and composer Stewart Goodyear sees him exploring his Carribean roots. I had the great privilege of being part of this recording with the Chineke! Orchestra in London a few years ago. I’ve had the third movement, ‘Ballad’, on repeat the last few days. Bongos and triangle set the mood before the sensually aromatic upper winds introduce a gently lilting melody nudged forward by anticipatory string chords underneath. Goodyear takes up the melody and expounds with an easy sincerity. Thoughtfully used percussion permeates the movement and helps create a relaxed but intoxicating perfumed vibe. This movement caresses and can absolutely transport you for its six-minute duration. The third movement has video on YouTube from the recording session, but I encourage you to listen to the entire work.” – Andrew Brady

There Is No Standing Still: Part I

Shared by Silas Farley
Director: Robert Rosenwasser
Editor: Philip Perkins
Music: Edgar Meyer
Choreography: Alonzo King and the dancers of LINES Ballet
Alonzo King is the Founder and Artistic Director of the San Francisco-based Alonzo King LINES Ballet. “In these films, as in all Alonzo King’s work, there is a celebration of the potential and beauty of humanity.” – Silas Farley

There Is No Standing Still: Part II


There Is No Standing Still: Part III


Marlonius Jazz Orchestra, “Stupid”

Shared by Marlon Martinez
“Here is my Los Angeles big band, Marlonius Jazz Orchestra, performing one of my original compositions. ‘Stupid’ is an exploration of many trends in the history of big band music, with humorous and sudden transitions. Solo spotlights: Daniel Rotem (saxophone), Aaron Janik (trumpet) and Ido Meshulam (trombone).” – Marlon Martinez

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