“Bessie Smith, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and the Blues”

Healdsburg Freedom Jazz Choir 2019

Join the Freedom Jazz Choir – three rehearsals leading up to a concert at the Raven Performing Arts Theater on March 1, 2019, celebrating the pioneers of jazz who came to artistic maturity in the 1920s – singer Bessie Smith, trumpeter Louis Armstrong, bandleader Duke Ellington and their shared roots in the blues.

Choir directors will once again be Marcus Shelby and Tiffany Austin.

New signups will also be accepted at the first rehearsal only, so please arrive 15 minutes before noon on Saturday, Jan. 19. Sorry, if you did not sign up or attend the first rehearsal, you’ve missed your chance this year.

Three required rehearsals at the Hilliard-Comstock Middle School, 2750 W. Steele Lane, Santa Rosa. Rehearsals are Saturday afternoons on the following dates:

  • January 19 (noon to 3 p.m.)
  • February 9 (noon to 3 p.m.)
  • February 23 (noon to 5 p.m.)

Background: In 2013, with help from a grant from the James Irvine Foundation, Marcus Shelby and Healdsburg Jazz christened the Freedom Jazz Choir, putting out the call for the community to join together in thematic song suites for Black History Month.

Since then almost 100 people every year but one have joined the Freedom Jazz Choir, to perform Shelby’s arrangements with the guidance of Tiffany Austin as co-director. These programs have proven popular with the community at their annual concerts, as well as the many local voices who “raise their voice in song” by joining the Freedom Jazz Choir.

Documents for Choir Members

Freedom Jazz Choir 2019 MUSIC (click to download)

Healdsburg Freedom Jazz Choir 2019 PROGRAM (click for download)