2001 - 2006
In the Fall of 2005, Cecilia will make her first
trip to Africa! She and pianist Amina Claudine Myers will
be playing duets during the STANBEC BANK GHANA JAZZ FESTIVAL
in Accra, Ghana.
Because of Cecilia work with Mary Lou Williams,
Cecilia has also been selected by Max Roach's family to archive
the works of Jazz Master Max Roach. This work will begin in
the spring of 2006.
The Mary Lou Williams Resurgence
Project will be celebrating the life of MARY LOU WILLIAMS
this year and through 2006. Cecilia will be an Artist-in-Residence
at Berklee College of Music where the music of Mary Lou Williams
will be the focus.
May 20, 2005 - The MARY LOU WILLIAMS RESURGENCE
BIG BAND with special guest AMINA CLAUDINE MEYERS - will celebrate
Ms. Williams birthday and the 10th Anniversary of the MARY
LOU WILLIAMS WOMEN IN JAZZ FESTIVAL AT THE JOHN F. KENNEDY
CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS in Washington D.C. - The World
Renowned - MORGAN STATE UNIVERSITY CHOIR will also perform
some of Ms. Williams rarely heard choral works.
Cecilia Smith has been granted a commission
through an anonymous benefactor. The piece DARK
TRIUMPH written, for large ensemble including a string
section, the BOYS'CHOIR OF HARLEM, vocalist ELON ROBIN DIXON
and Spoken Word. This project was recorded at RIGHT TRACK
STUDIO 509A on New York City. The commission will result in
2 CD recording. This musical work traces the life of an African
American Senior citizen Victoria L. Smith who has led an extremely
unusual life of service. The work can best be compared to
the work that was written by American composer - Aaron Copeland
- who wrote a piece called A LINCOLN PORTRAIT - which uses
orchestration and narration to highlight Lincoln's life. The
work that Cecilia Smith has composed, utilized both Jazz and
Classical composing devises as well as some sampled sounds
generated through keyboard. This recording will be released
for educational institution - Fall o f 2005. The commercial
release is scheduled for Feb. 2006.
VIBES DUOS - Began with Japanese vibest Yoichi
in a collaboration that was recorded in Paris and released
in Japan in the late '90's.
The Cecilia Smith Jay Hoggard Quintet - modeled
after the 1970's duo vibe ensemble Double Image (Dave Friedman
and Dave Samuels). This quintet combines the efforts of two
Vibraphonists as well as Vibraphone and Marimba in a duo mallet
setting plus rhythm section. The program includes works made
famous by vibest Milt Jackson and Lionel Hampton. Compositions
by Mary Lou Williams Clifford Brown and original compositions
by Smith and Hoggard were also performed. Performance at the
Clifford Brown Jazz Festival is also available for down load
at www.cliffordbrownjazzfest.com. Cecilia will continues the
Vibes Duo project with a new vibest in the spring of 2005.
May 2004 - Cecilia was commissioned by the Mary
Lou Williams Foundation to edit and adapt the Mary Lou Williams
piece GHOST OF LOVE. Cecilia arrangement of THE GLORIA was
played by the LINCOLN CENTER BIG BAND at their Music Of Mary
Lou Williams concert at Alice Tully Hall May 14, and 15th,
March 2004 - Cecilia Smith Quartet with Special
Guest JENNIFER HOLIDAY ( R&B & Gospel vocalist most
noted for the her work in the original Broadway hit Dream
Girls) and the Abyssinian Baptist Church Gospel Choir - New
THE CECILIA SMITH QUINTET
- featuring vocalist - ELON ROBIN DIXON continues to do performances
throughout the US.
Cecilia has been exploring the compositional
works OF MARY LOU WILLIAMS. She most recently appeared at
the JOHN F. KENNEDY CENTER for the PERFORMING ARTS where she
both lectured and performed an all MARY LOU WILLIAMS program
of music. She also premiered 2 works of MARY LOU WILLIAMS
- TELL ME HOW LONG THE TRAINS BEEN GONE and PO-TA- BE A BOOGIE
(Suppose to be a Boogie). Ms. Smith was commissioned to explore
the original music manuscripts of MARY LOU WILLIAMS and edit
works that Mary Lou Williams had never performed. These new
works 71 and DIZZY will be premiered at NEW ENGLAND CONSERVATORY
in the SPRING of 2003.. Cecilia has created a Multi-Media
Presentation on the works of the understated Mary Lou Williams.
Work has been presented in New York, Boston and Washington
D.C. She has also began creating musical pieces based on the
compositional concepts of MARY LOU WILLIAMS. The first piece
- SKETCH 1 - Truth Be Told - For MARY LOU WILLIAMS was premiered
in Boston and later in Connecticut and Washington D.C.
Cecilia is currently working with poet TRACIE
MORRIS in a collaborative effort called NEW WORKS UNSPOKEN
AND SPOKEN. This new work unites
Cecilia's unique composing style with Tracie Morris's unique
YEYE (SPIRIT) with choreographer and GUGENHEIM
FELLOW Gabri Christa. Cecilia created improvisational music
around the midi compositions for this work. Guitarist - Vernon
Reed, composed the compositions.
Cecilia has received a MEET THE COMPOSER GRANT
that allowed her to perform in a number of Queens Public Libraries.
MIDATLANTIC ARTS FOUNDATION TOUR PLANNING GRANT
This grant allowed me to perform my new work for a host of
Mid Atlantic Arts Presenters.
Currently Ms. Smith is working on two CD projects.
The first project is a "straight ahead"
music project entitled "NEW THOUGHTS ON TRADITION".
This project involves the rearrangement of a number of American
standard compositions. Smith will use exciting musical processes
as arrangement devices to create new compositions while maintaining
Another project is entitled, "!GROOVE!" Smith
will take a number of original compositions that reflect the
popular music culture of today and using R&B and hip-hop
grooves, along with several world music and rock rhythms,
will compose new work for presentation. It is in the tradition
of the jazz artist that popular music be rearranged with harmonic,
rhythmic as well as performance complexities that the jazz
musician has to offer. These devices give new meaning to the
music of today. Ms. Smith has also included a number of today's
popular music compositions that round out this musical plan.