Piano Department professor Suzanna Sifter, author of Berklee Jazz Keyboard Harmony: Using Upper Structure Triads and teacher of the Upper Structure Triad Applications 1 and 2 lab, will be giving the second of two master classes on upper-structure triads this semester. In this second master class, we will review commonly used, tension-specific, upper-structure triads for the most commonly used chord qualities. Next, we will use these triads as melodic material for jazz improvisation. We will explore many practice methods for utilizing these triads. The potential for upper-structure triads as a compositional element will also be discovered. Come expand your melodic palette!
Winners of the Piano Department's student composer/performer competition will perform their original pieces. Performances include jazz piano trio, gospel organ, solo piano, and small ensemble. Don't miss this opportunity to see your fellow students perform their originals.
Piano Department faculty member Tim Ray will give an overview of all the important styles associated with jazz piano, including ragtime, stride, boogie-woogie, bebop, Latin, New Orleans, and others. He will discuss the major pianists in each genre and talk about what makes each style different from the others. And he'll demonstrate these differences by performing the same song in each style, a song that everyone in the room will know—guaranteed.
A part of the Kennedy Center showcase of organists, Clifton Williams is an accomplished pianist from Washington, D.C. In the spring of 2010, Williams was invited by the U.S. ambassador to Vienna, Austria, to perform a series of concerts there and in Paris, France.
Williams was the valedictorian of his class at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts High School and now attends Berklee College of Music on a presidential scholarship. While at Berklee, he has taken full advantage of its opportunities, playing in numerous concerts and accompanying other performers in vocal classes and recitals.
Recently, Williams toured with the Harlem Gospel Choir both nationally and internationally. He is a dual major in music education and contemporary writing and production. He aspires to be a well-rounded musician and an inspiration to all who encounter him.