Wynton Marsalis Jazzes Up Cali Immersive Residencies

Jazz and classical music legend Wynton Marsalis provided the pinnacle to the new Cali Immersive Residency Program, a reimagined professional residency program of 10 rotating ensembles and solo artists at the John J. Cali School of Music, when he came to campus for a three-day series of master classes and events in November.

Wynton Marsalis playing trumpet
Wynton Marsalis

Marsalis, an internationally acclaimed musician, composer, bandleader and educator, worked with Montclair State students on improvisation, composition and instrumental techniques.

Marsalis headlined events including a brass master class, a discussion on composition and arranging, a master class for all students, and a “Behind the Scenes with Wynton” Cali Conversation with Cali School Director Anthony Mazzocchi.

“While dreaming up the idea of our Cali Immersive Residency Program, I thought about musicians around the world who are the embodiment of ‘citizen artists’ – people who utilize every ounce of their being and every talent they have to touch lives and educate through their art,” says Mazzocchi. ”Wynton Marsalis was one of the first who came to mind.”

It’s been an exciting season for the Cali School, welcoming the Harlem Quartet as its new quartet-in-residence, introducing composer-in-residence Jessie Montgomery, and inaugurating the new weekly residency program, which has included other luminaries such as the choral octet VOCES8; the charismatic “classical-meets-rock-star-duo” Peter Dugan and Charles Yang; electro-acoustic violist Trevor New; composer and soprano Kamala Sankaram; JACK Quartet; and the phenomenal Kronos Quartet.

“It’s a complete reimagination of what artistic residency means,” says Mazzocchi – one that is designed to tear down silos and provide innovative learning opportunities.