Arts and Entertainment

Jazz workshop comes to Peninsula College

Internationally acclaimed jazz performer Dmitri Matheny presents a Jazz Improvisation Workshop at Peninsula College from 2-4 p.m. Tuesday, July 16, in Maier Performance Hall, 1502 E. Lauridsen Blvd., Port Angeles.


The workshop is free to the public and is intended for serious students of all ages. Community members who simply wish to sit in on the workshop and listen also are invited based on seat availability.


Matheny, a flugelhornist and composer, bases his workshops on the teachings of his mentor, jazz legend Art Farmer. In his teachings, Matheny advocates a lyrical, melodic approach to jazz which stands in stark contrast to the chord scale and pattern-based methods currently in vogue.


Matheny also explores the mental processes that take place while playing jazz and the skills required for true improvisation.


In part two, Matheny explains how to create melodies spontaneously and develop them in real time through a series of simple or complex harmonic changes. He provides recorded examples, demonstrates specific techniques and shares relevant anecdotes from his professional career and years of tutelage under Farmer.


In part three, Matheny discusses the importance of developing one's own personal sound and style of playing and offers practical advice.


“Your solo is an opportunity to express something entirely new and profoundly personal,” Matheny says. “Create your own melody. Tell your own story. Sing your own song! This is no time for plugging in recycled, memorized material.”


Matheny is an honors graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan and the Berklee College of Music, Boston. First introduced to jazz audiences in the 1990s as the protégé of Art Farmer, Matheny has, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, matured into "one of the jazz world's most talented horn players."


Matheny’s appearance is sponsored by the Peninsula College Music Department. Dr. David Jones, music professor at Peninsula College, says, “This is a great opportunity for those who love jazz and love to perform to learn from a true master. We’re very fortunate to have him teach a workshop for us, and we invite all interested jazz performers and listeners to come and learn what real jazz improv is all about.”


For more information, call 417-6405 or see the Peninsula College website at
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