• America's definitive Third Stream orchestra  Where Jazz and Classical meet in harmony

    America's definitive Third Stream orchestra

    Where Jazz and Classical meet in harmony

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Our Story

Chicago Jazz Philharmonic combines jazz and classical to create new, evolved, “third stream” musical experiences at home and around the world. CJP's third stream approach unites diverse perspectives, expanding the potential of what music brings to life for students, musicians, audiences, and communities.

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The Founders

"Heart and Soul” -Best friends for more than 35 years, Orbert Davis and Mark Ingram founded MusicAlive in 1998 in an effort to repair the damaging effects of the elimination of music arts programming in Chicago schools. Upon witnessing the powerful impact of the arts on elementary students, their vision expanded to give birth to the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic. JazzAlive, now the center of Chicago Jazz Philharmonic’s educational initiatives, reflects a deep commitment to the arts and how it impacts the lives of individuals, diversifies the culture of a community, and defines the fabric of a city.

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  • The Chicago Jazz Philharmonic’s arsenal of 60 musicians is drawn from a wealth of Chicago area talent, across both jazz and classical communities. Orchestra musicians recount their CJP performances as “unlike anything [they] have ever experienced playing.”

  • Our Staff

    Birdie SotiExecutive Director

    Birdie Soti
    Executive Director

    Orbert DavisArtistic Director

    Orbert Davis
    Artistic Director

    Mark IngramProducing Director

    Mark Ingram
    Producing Director

    Erick Deshaun DorrisGeneral Manager

    Erick Deshaun Dorris
    General Manager

    Jordan MandelaProgram Manager

    Jordan Mandela
    Program Manager

    Arthur TurnbullTechnology Manager

    Arthur Turnbull
    Technology Manager

    Roger HeissSound Engineer

    Roger Heiss
    Sound Engineer

    Erendira IzguerraLibrarian

    Erendira Izguerra
    Librarian

    Genova IzguerraAssistant Librarian

    Genova Izguerra
    Assistant Librarian

    Thomas GuntherMusic Copyist

    Thomas Gunther
    Music Copyist

  • Orchestra Musicians

    Rhythm Section
    Leandro Varady, piano
    Stewart Miller, bass
    Ernie Adams, drums
    John Moulder, guitar

    Strings
    1st Violin
    Sylvia de la Cerna
    Phyllis Griffin
    Barbara Farley
    Gail Salvatori
    Jennifer Dunne
    Karen Nelson
    Zara Zaharieva
    Racquel Davis

    2nd Violin
    Kristine Semanic
    Christine Fliginger
    Daniel Wilkerson
    Erendira Izguerra
    Lucia Thomas
    Debora Ponko
    Songhea Sackrider
    Christine Chon

    Viola
    Lynn La Plante Allaway
    Scott Dowd
    Karen Dickleman
    Istvan Loga
    Oana Tatu
    Danielle Taylor

    Cello
    Ellen Frolichstein
    Ann Hendrickson-Griffin
    Jocelyn Shoulderss
    Elizabeth Anderson
    Kelsee Vandervall
    Jill Kaeding

    Bass Violin
    Jacques Harper
    John Floeter
    Richard Armandi
    John Sutton

    Brass
    Trumpets
    David Spencer
    Mark Olen
    Christopher Davis

    Trombones
    Tracy Kirk
    Henry Salgado
    Norman Palm
    John Blane, Bass Trombone

    Tuba
    Michael Hogg

    French Horns
    Beth Mazur-Johnson
    Michael Buckwalter
    Malik Taylor

    Woodwinds
    Flutes
    Stephen Eisen
    Mayshell Morris
    Steve Yepez

    Oboe / English Horn
    Amy Barwan, Oboe / English Horn
    June Matayoshi, Oboe
    Austyn Estey-Ang

    Clarinets
    Anna Najoom
    Teresa Reilly
    Michael Salter, Bass & Contra Bass Clarinet

    Bassoon/Contra Bassoon
    Susan Nigro
    Matthew Lano

    Tenor Saxophone
    Stephen Eisen
    Michael Salter

    Percussion
    Sarah Allen, Tympani
    Mark Smith
    Jose Rendon
    Jonathan Wenzel
    Thaddeus Tukes, vibes
  • Teaching Faculty

    Roosevelt Griffin

    Roosevelt Griffin

    Director, CJP Youth Ensemble and Jazz Band
    Phyllis Sanders

    Phyllis Sanders

    Director, Strings Ensemble
    Erendira Izguerra

    Erendira Izguerra

    Director, Level I Strings
    Henry Salgado

    Henry Salgado

    Instructor, Brass Master Class
    Artie Black

    Artie Black

    Instructor, Woodwinds Master Class
    Mikel P. Avery

    Mikel P. Avery

    Instructor, Music Discovery
    Phil Fornett

    Phil Fornett

    Instructor, Music Discovery and Drumline
    Mark Smith

    Mark Smith

    Instructor, Music Discovery Steel Pan
    John Sutton

    John Sutton

    Director, Jazz Band Instructor, Rhythm Section Master Class
    Suzanne Osman

    Suzanne Osman

    Instructor, Music Discovery, Jazz Band, Drumline

    Victor Marin

    Guitar
    Christine Fliginger

    Christine Fliginger

    Music Discovery, Strings
    Max Bessesen

    Max Bessesen

    Jazz Band
    Emily Kuhn

    Emily Kuhn

    Music Discovery, Jazz Band
    Charles Taylor

    Charles Taylor

    Director, Jazz Choir
    Ethan Valentin

    Ethan Valentin

    Choir Accompanist
  • Featured Guest Artists

    T'Keyah Crystal Keymah - Featured Guest Artist, Orator

    T'Keyah Crystal Keymah - Featured Guest Artist, Orator

    Richard Steele - Featured Guest Artist, Orator

    Richard Steele - Featured Guest Artist, Orator

    Kurt Elling - Vocalist

    Kurt Elling - Vocalist

    Dee Alexander - Vocalist

    Dee Alexander - Vocalist

    Terisa Griffin - Vocalist

    Terisa Griffin - Vocalist

    Jackie Allen - Vocalist

    Jackie Allen - Vocalist

    Bobbi Wilsyn - Vocalist

    Bobbi Wilsyn - Vocalist

    Joan Collaso - Vocalist

    Joan Collaso - Vocalist

    Maggie Brown - Vocalist

    Maggie Brown - Vocalist

    The Soul Children of Chicago - Vocalists

    The Soul Children of Chicago - Vocalists

    Howard Levy -  Harmonica

    Howard Levy - Harmonica

    Ari Brown - Saxophonist

    Ari Brown - Saxophonist

    Ernest Dawkins - Saxophonist

    Ernest Dawkins - Saxophonist

    Nicole Mitchell - Flutist

    Nicole Mitchell - Flutist

    Reginald Robinson - Pianist

    Reginald Robinson - Pianist

    Zim Ngqawana - Saxophonist

    Zim Ngqawana - Saxophonist

    Brandon McCune - Pianist

    Brandon McCune - Pianist

    Zach Brock - Violinist

    Zach Brock - Violinist

    Marianna Soroka - Percussionist

    Marianna Soroka - Percussionist

    Willie Pickens - Pianist

    Willie Pickens - Pianist

    Martin ‘Tre’ Dumas

    Martin ‘Tre’ Dumas

    Kerry Leung - Pipa, Dizi

    Kerry Leung - Pipa, Dizi

    Menghua Guan - Guzheng

    Menghua Guan - Guzheng

    Guanglong Li - Erhu

    Guanglong Li - Erhu

    Kalyan Pathak - Tabla, Dabani, Hand Drums, Vocalist

    Kalyan Pathak - Tabla, Dabani, Hand Drums, Vocalist

    Hitesh Master Nayak - Harmonium, Vocalist

    Hitesh Master Nayak - Harmonium, Vocalist

    Natya Dance Theatre - Dancers

    Natya Dance Theatre - Dancers

    Sekou Conde - Djembefola

    Sekou Conde - Djembefola

    Babu Atiba - Djembefola

    Babu Atiba - Djembefola

    Obari Adeye Cartman - Dununfola

    Obari Adeye Cartman - Dununfola

    Steve Eisen - Flutist, Saxophonist

    Steve Eisen - Flutist, Saxophonist

    Art Hoyle - Trumpetist

    Art Hoyle - Trumpetist

    Stu Katz - Vibraphonist

    Stu Katz - Vibraphonist

    Bobby Lewis - Trumpet

    Bobby Lewis - Trumpet

    Pat Mallinger - Saxophonist

    Pat Mallinger - Saxophonist

    Tammy McCann - Vocalist

    Tammy McCann - Vocalist

    Bethany Pickens - Pianist

    Bethany Pickens - Pianist

    Thaddeus Tukes - Vibraphonist

    Thaddeus Tukes - Vibraphonist

    Mayshell Morris - Flutist

    Mayshell Morris - Flutist

    Joel Ross - Vibraphonist

    Joel Ross - Vibraphonist

    Sarah Marie Young - Vocalist

    Sarah Marie Young - Vocalist

    Kevin King - Saxophonist

    Kevin King - Saxophonist

    Ron OJ Parson - Orator

    Ron OJ Parson - Orator

    Rajiv Halim - Saxophonist

    Rajiv Halim - Saxophonist

    Tubad - Tubist

    Tubad - Tubist

  • Board

    Michael Allaway - Chair

    Michael Allaway - Chair

    Elizabeth Saunders -  Vice Chair

    Elizabeth Saunders - Vice Chair

    Partner, Clermont Partners
    Mark N Moultrie Jr. - Board Secretary

    Mark N Moultrie Jr. - Board Secretary

    Private Banker, BMO Private Bank
    Orbert Davis

    Orbert Davis

    Co-Founder and Artistic Director, Chicago Jazz Philharmonic
    Mark Ingram

    Mark Ingram

    President, Mai-Tech Interactive & Graphics | Founder and Managing Director, Chicago Jazz Philharmonic
    Rumi Kuli

    Rumi Kuli

    Executive Vice President, Options Xpress
    Lesley Picchietti

    Lesley Picchietti

    Principal, Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting
  • Advisory Board

    Lauren Deustch

    Lauren Deustch

    Executive Director, Jazz Institute of Chicago
    James Newcomb

    James Newcomb

    Director of Global Brand Management, The Boeing Corporation
    Lynn LaPlante

    Lynn LaPlante

    Violinist, Chicago Jazz Philharmonic
    Rich Daniels

    Rich Daniels

    Director, City Lights Orchestra
    Ron McCurdy

    Ron McCurdy

    Chairman, Jazz Studies Dept., USC Thornton School of Music
    Mary Jo Papich

    Mary Jo Papich

    President, Jazz Education Network
    R. Susan Motley

    R. Susan Motley

    Philanthropy & Non-Profit Sector Program, Loyola University
    Barry Mayo

    Barry Mayo

    President, Radio One
    Kassie Davis

    Kassie Davis

    Executive Director, Chicago Mercantile Exchange Trust
    Kurt Elling

    Kurt Elling

    Jazz Vocalist
    Marta Farion

    Marta Farion

    Director, Kyiv-Mohyla Foundation of America
    Earl Jones

    Earl Jones

    President, Clear Channel Radio Chicago
    Brett Batterson

    Brett Batterson

    Executive Director, Auditorium Theatre