"It all started with improvisation" says founder, dancer and co-host Patricia Nicholson Parker. "I define Avant Jazz as disciplined disregard of traditional sound barriers – you can pick and
choose the rules you are going to use or not use… 99% of what I
present is improvisation." She says the festival hasn't changed too much over the 14 years she's been putting it on but she does feel like our
community has lost it's understanding and it's relationship to art, partly because of market place pressures to be financially successful and partly because of the new "viral" world we are all living in now. "You have to
hear it live – it's visceral art – it's exciting, inspiring, it's doesn't do
the same thing when you are plugged in".
Tonight's (very visceral) closing celebration includes
performances by Jason Kao Hwang's Spontaneous River with a 30 String
Ensemble, The William Parker Quartet plus Special Guests Bobby
Bradford on trumpet and James Spaulding on sax. Then there's an After
Party at The Local 269 (Corner of Houston and Suffolk Street) with a jam
session led by Bobby Bradford that should go well in to the night.