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Wynton Marsalis

Wynton Marsalis

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Booking Wynton Marsalis

To book Wynton Marsalis or another Blues & Jazz artist for your private party, corporate event, fundraiser or other function, please fill out our Artist Request Form to quickly connect with one of our Booking Agents.

The staff of Headline Booking Group will work with you to produce a memorable event. Get started now by filling out our no-obligation Artist Request Form and we will work with you to book Wynton Marsalis or another Blues & Jazz for your event.


Biography

Wynton Marsalis was born in New Orleans, where his father, Ellis Marsalis, is a well-respected jazz pianist and teacher. His brothers Branford and Delfeo are also notable musicians. Wynton received his first trumpet at age six, and played in public at age seven, but did not begin to study seriously until he was 12. At 14, he made his debut with the New Orleans Philharmonic. Throughout high school, he played first trumpet with the New Orleans Civic Orchestra, while playing funk and jazz with other local groups. A straight-A student, he graduated from high school with honors, and at age 17, began his studies at the Juilliard School of Music in New York City. Still in his teens, the young trumpeter joined Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, the great finishing school of many jazz musicians. Drummer Blakey was often called the Lion Tamer, because of his dedication to discovering and training the best young instrumentalists.

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By age 19, Marsalis had signed a recording contract with CBS Records. He made his recording debut as a leader in 1982, and over the next 17 years produced close to 40 jazz and classical recordings for Columbia Jazz and Sony Classical. In 1983 he became the first and only artist, to win both classical and jazz Grammy Awards in the same year, a feat he immediately repeated. To date he has won six Grammy awards for his jazz recordings and two for recordings of classical music. In 1987 Wynton Marsalis co-founded Jazz at Lincoln Center to sponsor jazz performance and educational programs at New York’s premier performing arts center. Since 1992, Marsalis has served as the organization’s Artistic Director, and as leader of the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. Beginning in 1993, Marsalis has composed music for ballet and modern dance, creating works for the New York City Ballet and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. In 1994, he published his first book, Sweet Swing Blues on the Road. In 1997, Wynton Marsalis received the Pulitzer Prize for Music for his oratorio Blood in the Fields. Marsalis was the first jazz musician ever to be so honored. The year 2000 saw the release of the eight-volume CD series Swinging Into the 21st. The series includes a seven-disc boxed set of live performances from the Village Vanguard and seven other volumes.

Marsalis produces music education programs for public radio and television. His four-part, Peabody Award-winning TV series Marsalis on Music, introduces young viewers to the adventure of making music. The Peabody citation for Marsalis on Musicalso recognized his 26-part National Public Radio series, Making the Music, which was based on the Jazz for Young People concerts he leads at Lincoln Center.

In 2004, Marsalis presided over the long-awaited opening of Jazz at Lincoln Center’s new home: Frederick P. Rose Hall, the world’s first performing arts facility designed specifically for jazz education, performance and broadcast. Under the leadership of Wynton Marsalis, Jazz at Lincoln Center produces a year-round schedule of education, performance and broadcast events with the Jazz Orchestra, the Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra and a comprehensive array of guest artists. It is the world’s largest not-for-profit arts organization dedicated to jazz.
When Hurricane Katrina devastated his native city in 2005, Marsalis swung into action, organizing benefit concerts in both New York and New Orleans to raise money for relief and reconstruction efforts. Beyond his achievements as an artist,, Wynton Marsalis has matured into a public figure of courage and conviction.

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