Under the direction of violinist Rachel Jordan and founded in 2002, the Music Alive Ensemble is a blend of professional classical and jazz musicians, composers, arrangers and educators living in Louisiana. This concert provides music lover an opportunity to enjoy some of New Orleans most renowned jazz divas in Bazzle, Chase, and Jordan performing some of your favorite holiday tunes:
Germaine Bazzle is often referred to as one of New Orleans’ important jazz vocalists. After graduation from Xavier University of Louisiana, Germaine began a teaching career and entertaining in the same year, teaching during the day and playing bass in a local traditional jazz band at night. After 12 years as a teacher, she left the classroom and began singing with various bands in New Orleans. Three years later, she returned to the classroom, but continued to perform with such jazz greats as Alvin "Red" Tyler, Peter "Chuck" Badie, Victor Goines, bassist/vocalist, George French, pianist Ellis Marsalis, Emile Vinnette, Larry Siebert, David Torkanowsky and many more. Germaine can be heard on her CD entitled "Standing Ovation".
Leah Chase is the product of a very fertile creative environment. Her maternal namesake, Leah Sr., is an engaging dynamo of activity and chief chef at "Dooky Chase" Restaurant. Her father Edgar "Dooky" Chase was the leader of the "Dooky Chase Orchestra". Leah Chase graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans with a degree in Vocal Performance. She completed one year of graduate study at The Juilliard School in New York, before leaving to pursue her true love - Jazz. Leah can be heard on her CD entitled "At Last" and also on the Matt Lemmier CD "Portraits of Wonder". Leah is currently an Adjunct Faculty Member at the University of New Orleans, Tulane University, and Loyola University.
Stephanie Jordan performed the national anthem alongside Grammy Award winning saxophonist Branford Marsalis and guitarist Jonathan Dubose at the 2008 NBA All- Star Game in New Orleans. She has appeared live on NPR Talk of the Nation, Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, Marians Jazzroom in Bern Switzerland, St Croix Blue Bay Jazz Fest, Manship Theatre in Baton Rouge, Duke Ellington Festival, Washington D.C., Chicago JazzFest Heritage, Glenwood Springs, Co., the New Orleans Ladies of Jazz, Adagio’s Jazz Club in Savannah, Hayti Heritage Center in Durham, Sweet Lorraine’s in New Orleans and is a regular at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Stephanie has been inducted as a member of the New Orleans Magazine All-Stars and has served as a ‘Jazz Ambassadors’ for the U.S. Department of State.
Rachel Jordan, a Professor of Violin at Jackson State University has served as adjunct faculty at Xavier University, Southern University, and Dillard University. She was a member of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra in New Orleans. Ms. Jordan received both her Bachelor of Music and her Master of Music from the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland where she studied with the great Berl Sernofsky. She is currently a member of the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra in Houston, Texas.
Music Alive Ensemble is dedicated to the ideal that music as art communicates the breadth, passion and intellect of society. Through concerts, artist demonstrations, and teaching workshops Music Alive Ensemble provides musicians, composers and arrangers a platform for artistic expression. Music Alive Ensemble perpetuates cultural diversity and finds common ground through classical and jazz artistic collaboration. "Our goal is to bring families into artistic venues in hopes that the experience will educate and encourage burgeoning artists and develop a supportive listening base for future generations of musicians," adds Rachel.
The String Quartet will include Rachel Jordan, Violin; Amy Thiaville, Violin; Marjorie Garnier, Viola; and Gary Geslin, Cello while the Jazz Ensemble will include Mike Esneault, Piano; Chris Severin, Bass, John Jones, Drums; Jonathan Bloom, Percussion; Kent Jordan, Flute and Marlon Jordan, Trumpet.
The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization was set up to be the nonprofit owner of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival - Jazz Fest (www.nojazzfest.com) - with a mission to sow the seeds of our unique culture for generations to come. Its goal is to make sure that the festival's proceeds would be redistributed into the local community. The Foundation’s mission is "To promote, preserve, perpetuate and encourage the music, arts, culture and heritage of communities in Louisiana through festivals, programs and other cultural, educational, civic and economic activities."
To that end, the Foundation has developed numerous programs and assets and is the prime sponsor of this event. Other sponsors include the University of New Orleans, Kidd Jordan Institute of Jazz and Modern Music, Metro Disposal Inc., The Law Office of Chip Forstall, Sylvain Solutions, and Zawadi Giving Circle.
Marjorie M Garnier: Native of Port-au-Prince, Haiti and a junior enrolled in the BA program at Loyola University, pursuing a degree in viola performance. She is a Violin Instructor at the NOLA GNOYO program and at the Loyola Music Prep. program. Marjorie has been teaching the strings instruments for more than 10 years and had conducted several youth orchestra in Haiti.
Garry M. Geslin: Native of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, is a freshman at Loyola University in Cello performance. He has played with the Gnoyo Symphony for the past three years and performed with them at Carnegy Hall as assistant principal Cellist. Garry had won two consecutive scolarship to participate at the Suzuki Camp in Monreal Canada.
Amy Thiaville received her Bachelor of Music degree from University of Wisconsin-Madison where she studied with the late Vartan Manoogian, the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra and the Madison Symphony. At Yale, she earned her Master of Music degree in Violin Performance. After finishing her studies, Ms. Thiaville moved to New Orleans upon receiving the title of Assistant Concertmaster in the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra. She earned the title Concertmaster shortly thereafter. She has performed as soloist with the LPO including Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, Vaughan Williams Lark Ascending, and Mozart Symphonie Concertante to name a few. Thiaville is also one of the founding members of Music Alive Ensemble. Amy is a member of Houston's River Oaks Chamber Orchestra and has been on the Loyola faculty since 2006.
Mike Esneault: Pianist/Composer/Orchestrator Mike Esneault's early studies began with two influential mentors, renowned clarinetist Alvin Batiste and composer/arranger Dr Bert Braud. Esneault received a Bachelor's of Arts from LSU and then later continued his music studies at North Texas University. Esneault has established a prolific career as a composer/arranger for various mediums, including television, motion picture, and live concerts as well as compact disc recordings.
Kent Jordan is one of New Orleans' most prominent jazz musicians. He studied at the Eastman School of Music and New Orleans' Center for the Creative Arts. Jordan played and recorded with the groups Jasmine and the Improvisational Arts Quartet before cutting two critically acclaimed Columbia albums in 1984 and 1986. His third Columbia album (1988's Essence) is his strongest, revealing him to be a capable soloist and composer. Since then, Jordan has toured extensively with jazz drum legend Elvin Jones and continues to show the jazz world that he is one of the most creative musicians around.
Trumpeter Marlon Jordan was one of the "Young Jazz Lions" who were signed, recorded and promoted on major record labels in the 1980s. He recorded three impressive LPs for Columbia from 1998 to 1992, For You Only, Learson's Return, and The Undaunted, and one for the Arabesque label entitled Marlon's Mode in 1997. His latest album, Marlon Jordan featuring Stephanie Jordan, You Don't Know What Love Is announces the return of an exceptional trumpeter.
John Jones is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana. He began his musical journey on the drums at the age of eight and has been performing professionally since he was twelve. In 2006, John received his Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance from Southern University. The following year, John was encouraged to audition for the Louis Armstrong Quintet program at the University of New Orleans. He was accepted into the LAQ program under the direction of Steve Masakowski and Ed Peterson and is currently working towards his Master's Degree. John is also presently studying with renowned jazz drummer, Troy Davis.
Percussionist Jonathan Bloom is a member of the musically inclined Chatters family of New Orleans. A graduate of the University of New Orleans in Arts Education, Bloom serves as the educational coordinator for Thelonious Monk Institute in New Orleans. A member of the faculty of the Louis Armstrong Jazz Camp, Jonathan has performed was a number of not-worthy musicians, including the late Alvin Batiste, Ellis Marsalis, Kidd Jordan, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and others.
Chris Severin has performed with many jazz greats, including: Dr. John, Dianne Reeves, Ellis Marsalis , Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Terence Blanchard, Lou Rawls, Alvin Batiste, Herlin Riley, Victor Goines, Irma Thomas and Kent Jordan. He has toured worldwide to such venues as the Bern Jazz Festival, Berlin Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, Mt. Fuji Jazz Festival, Montreau and the Nexus Night Club. He has also been selected by top jazz recording companies such as Blue Note Records, Rounder Records and Windham Hill Records. He also serves on the faculty of the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA).