As in previous years, scholarship grants were awarded at the New Jersey Jazz Society monthly social held on Sunday May 15th, 2016 at Shanghai Jazz in Madison NJ to four deserving students pursuing degrees in Jazz Studies at each of four New Jersey Universities offering such degree programs.
Vincent Dupont, Bass, William Paterson University (Jack Stine Scholarship). Vincent was nominated by Jazz Studies Director Dave Demsey for this scholarship. A native of Hudson, New Hampshire, Vincent benefitted from the tutelage of bassist Marcus McLaurine and pianist Harold Mabern at William Paterson. Vincent continues to appear as a regular member of drummer Winard Harper’s band as he works his way toward an undergraduate degree.
Diego Ferreira, Saxophone and Cristiano Ludwig, Saxophone, New Jersey City State University (Don Robertson Scholarship). Walt Weiskopf, Director of Jazz Studies at New Jersey City State University, nominated these students as co-recipients of the Don Robertson Scholarship. Both attended high school in their native Brazil and are benefitting from the tutelage of fellow saxophonists Weisskopf and Bob Malach at the New Jersey City University.
Keith Bianchini, Trombone, Rowan University (Bill Walters Scholarship). Keith, originally from Clementon, New Jersey, was nominated by Jazz Studies Director Denis Diblasio to receive this scholarship. Diblasio, George Rabbai, Rick Linn and Clint Sharman make up the quartet of Rowan instructors who work with the best horn players to come out of South Jersey and Southeast Pennsylvania’s high school programs.
Devenny Bennett, Trumpet, Rutgers University (Pee Wee Russell Scholarship). Devenny was nominated by trombonist Conrad Herwig, and the staff at the Rutgers University Mason Gross School of the Arts, to receive the scholarship for the second consecutive year. Among Devenny’s many projects will be a residency at this summer’s six-week Brevard Music Festival in Western North Carolina. She was unable to attend the Social.
Drummer Errold Lanier Jr. and pianist David Zaks, recipients of 2012 and 2013 Jazz Society scholarship awards respectively, both returned to play at the Social. William Paterson sophomore Mollie Friedman lent her vocal talents to the performance and rounded out the septet of young players.