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Kimmel Center Shares World Premiere Details for 2016-17 Jazz Residency Artists

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.@KimmelCenter shares details of new works by 2016-17 Season Jazz Residency Artists! World Premiere performances taking place May 11-13

Press Contact:

Amanda Conte




FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Philadelphia, PA, May 3, 2017) –– The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts has released details on the works that will be premiered as the 2016–17 Jazz Residency season comes to a close. World Premiere performances will take place in SEI Innovation Studio May 11–13, 2017.

The World Premieres mark the culmination of the season-long journey to create new jazz in Philadelphia, as the residency draws the artists – selected by a prestigious panel of judges – and audiences together through Public Workshops, Work-in-Progress performances, and the World Premieres.

“It has been a pleasure to witness the evolving work of these three Jazz Residency artists throughout our 2016-17 season,” says Anne Ewers, President and CEO of The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. “These World Premiere performances represent the culmination of their hard work and a testament to our commitment to foster new work by Philadelphia jazz artists.”

More information about the 2016-17 Jazz Residency World Premiere projects below:

  • Joanna Pascale (vocalist, composer, and lyricist) and Etienne Charles (arranger) – Joanna Pascale partners with Etienne Charles to create a song cycle focused on floriorography – “the art of communicating sentiment and emotion through flowers.” Directed by Ellie Heyman, this deeply personal and intimate exploration of a woman’s soul and psyche – as told through the lens of flowers – uses elements of jazz and the Great American songbook to create a “musical bouquet.”
  • Jawanza Kobie (composer and pianist) –Jawanza Kobie partners with Obie Award winner Deb Margolin to create “Bird Stories,” a children’s story by Margolin that uses jazz instruments and music to convey important life lessons such as acceptance and tolerance of others in a cheerful way. These new stories are intended for kids and families and will encourage participation from the audience.
  • Max Swan (saxophonist, vocalist, and composer) – Max Swan’s genre-bending work draws inspiration from artists like James Blake, Sampha, Stevie Wonder, and Frank Ocean. Blending saxophone with bass, guitar, drums, and vocals, Swan channels writers of the last half-century, from Jim Croce to Billy Joel to Prince.

The 2016-17 Jazz Residency artists were selected by a five-personal panel of some of the nation’s most influential jazz experts, including Todd Stoll, Vice President of Education at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City; Eric Gould, Chair of Jazz Composition, Berklee College of Music in Boston; Dr. Aaron Flagg, Chair & Associate Director of Juilliard Jazz in New York City; Dr. Lesa Terry, musician and faculty member at California State University; and Jay Wahl, Producing Artistic Director of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in Philadelphia.

About the artists:

  • Joanna Pascale currently teaches at University of Pennsylvania. A graduate of the High School for the Creative and Performing Arts and Temple University, Pascale released her most recent album Wildflower in 2015. She is collaborating with 2015 Guggenheim Fellow and Michigan State University teacher Etienne Charles. Director Ellie Heyman was the Co-Artistic Director of The Orbiting Human Circus.
  • Jawanza Kobie began his music career teaching in Philadelphia elementary schools and now lives in Delaware. A retired electrician and Settlement Music School graduate, Kobie toured with singer Billy Paul. He is joined by Deb Margolin, Professor of Theater at Yale University.
  • Max Swan graduated from University of the Arts, studying Jazz Saxophone performance. He currently works at Federal Donuts.

About the residency:

Now in its fourth year, the Kimmel Center Jazz Residency nurtures selected musicians by providing a commission to create new work. The residency emphasizes collaboration, pairing nationally-renowned artists with residents, and community relevance, assisting in the discovery of what jazz in Philadelphia sounds like today.

The schedule of World Premiere performances is as follows:

SEI Innovation Studio

Thursday, May 11, 8:00 p.m. – Max Swan

Friday, May 12, 8:00 p.m. – Joanna Pascale and Etienne Charles

Saturday, May 13, 2:00 p.m. – Jawanza Kobie


Tickets are on sale now and are $15.00. All tickets are available at

These are designated BYO performances. Acceptable forms of BYO are 6-pack of beer and/or 750ml bottles of wine only; no liquor or open containers are permitted. Limit of one (1) 750ml bottle of wine OR one (1) six-pack of beer per two guests. Corkscrews and rolling coolers are not permitted. Ice, cups and corking service available at venue at no cost. All BYO Night guests are subject to lawful ID checks and bag checks at the manager’s discretion.

The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts

Located in the heart of Center City, Philadelphia, the Kimmel Center’s mission is to operate a world-class performing arts center that engages and serves a broad audience through diverse programming, arts education, and community outreach. The Kimmel Center Campus is comprised of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts (Verizon Hall, Perelman Theater, SEI Innovation Studio, and the Merck Arts Education Center), the Academy of Music (owned by the Philadelphia Orchestra Association), and the Merriam Theater. The Kimmel Center is also home to eight Resident Companies: The Philadelphia Orchestra, Opera Philadelphia, The Pennsylvania Ballet, The Philly POPS, PHILADANCO, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and Curtis Institute of Music. With nearly 9,000 seats per night, The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts is the region’s most impactful performing arts center, and the second largest in the country. TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, is the season sponsor of the Kimmel Center’s 2016-2017 Season. American Airlines is the official airline of Broadway Philadelphia. For additional information, visit

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