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29th Annual IAJE Conference Returns To West Coast

The International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE), the world's largest jazz gathering, will hold its 29th Annual Conference in Long Beach, Calif., Jan. 9 -12, 2002. Convention host sites are The Long Beach Convention Center and Hyatt Regency Hotel. More than 7,000 educators, musicians, and industry representatives from 35 countries are expected to attend. As a follow-up to the success of the 2001 Conference, held this past January in New York City, the IAJE Conference in Long Beach will offer a record number of concerts, seminars, showcases, and exhibits.

Over 150 artists and clinicians will participate in the conference program, including Dave Brubeck, Roy Hargrove, Gary Burton and Makoto Ozone, Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra with Dee Dee Bridgewater, Kenny Werner, Tiger Okoshi Quartet, Tower of Power, Danish Radio Big Band, Al Dimeola, Billy Childs Chamber Sextet, Alex Acuna, Masters of Groove, Winard Harper Sextet, Don Braden, Steve Wilson Quartet, Bob Florence Limited Edition Big Band, Joey DeFrancesco Trio, JoAnn Brackeen, Richie Cole Alto Madness Orchestra, Gordon Goodwin's Big Phat Band, Steve Houghton, the Med Flory Big Band featuring Supersax and the L.A. Voices, Ruben Alvarez, Poncho Sanchez, Marc Cary, Alex Acuna and Justo Almario, Kim Richmond Concert Jazz Orchestra, Shelly Berg/Frank Potenza Duo, The Either/Orchestra, Rodney Jones, Pete Escovedo Band with Sheila E, Joe Chambers, Ann Collins, Peter Erskine, Alan Pasqua, Dave Carpenter, Gregg Field, Victor Mendoza, Bob Mintzer, Airto Moreira, Lewis Nash, Ed Neumeister, Ellen Rowe, Randy Sabien, Bob Sheppard, Bobby Shew, Billy Taylor, Tierney Sutton and Mike Tomaro.

The European Jazz Festivals Organization and the IAJE have partnered to create a new award to recognize international artists who have contributed significantly to the evolution of jazz. The inaugural award, which includes a $20,000 honorarium, will be presented to Austrian keyboardist, bandleader, and composer Joe Zawinul.

A special tribute concert honoring Zawinul will be presented on Friday, Jan. 11, by the WDR German Radio Big Band under the direction of multiple Grammy winner Vince Mendoza. The concert will also feature guest artists who have played with Joe during his extensive career.

The 2nd Annual IAJE Gala Dinner will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 9. Hosted by Nancy Wilson, proceeds from the Gala will benefit the IAJE Global Outreach Fund. The IAJE Presidents Award, which honors an individual for their extraordinary contributions to the field of jazz education, will be presented during the dinner. Documentary film producer Ken Burns was last year's recipient.

On Saturday, Jan. 12, the IAJE Conference will host the National Endowment for the Arts American Jazz Masters Awards for the 12th consecutive year. Hosted by Dr. Billy Taylor, each honoree will receive a $20,000 fellowship during ceremonies at that evening's concert from the NEA Chairman. The 2002 award recipients will be announced this fall. Past NEA honorees were Randy Weston, Jackie McLean, and the late John Lewis.

A 40,000 sq. ft. music industry exposition will round out the conference with upwards of 300 exhibits representing a diverse mix of companies including festivals, publishers, manufacturers, agencies, schools, and record companies.