Evan Christopher at Avatar
Summer Gala June 3  2pm at Urban Stages, 259 West 30th Street, New York City


On behalf of The Jazz Drama Program, I would like to invite you to our first ever Summer Gala, a joyous gathering of Jazz Drama supporters to celebrate and benefit the ongoing work of the Jazz Drama Program, telling stories relevant to children's lives and promoting unity through the arts.    


Please join me and our friend and longtime supporter Mercedes Ellington, choreographer and Granddaughter of Duke Ellington who said, "I firmly believe that any exposure to the arts like this is vital to the spirit of America, to the spirit of the children."

Mercedes Ellington and Shireen Dickson
Mercedes Ellington and
Shireen Dickson


A highlight of the festivities will be to honor a great hero of arts education, Principal and co-founder of Celia Cruz Bronx High School of Music, Dr. William Rodriguez.  


Students from Celia Cruz High School will perform scenes and songs from Holding the Torch for Liberty, the jazz musical about women's suffrage by Eli Yamin and Clifford Carlson with choreography by Shireen Dickson. These young artists are featured on the new Cast CD which also features New Orleans clarinet sensation Evan Christopher, violinist Sara Caswell of Esperanza Spalding's Band, Columbia University Jazz Performance Chair, Chris Washburne on trombone, Nicki Parrott, bass, Stefan Schatz, drums and yours truly, Artistic Director, Eli Yamin on piano.    


Liberty Artwork
Artwork by Sarah Edkins


All ticket holders will get an advance copy of the CD signed by the authors, refreshments and a champagne toast!


Tickets to this exclusive event are extremely limited and can be purchased for $100 by following the link below.  $75 of your ticket price is tax deductible.    


Please join special guest Mercedes Ellington and me to take advantage of this unique opportunity to support the work of The Jazz Drama Program and embrace the best of what America can be for opportunity, equality, creativity and community.  


Your kind support is needed!


Purchase Tickets 





Students at Celia Cruz
Eli Yamin with Jazz Drama students

Jazz Drama Program Summer Gala

Sunday, June 3 at Urban Stages, NYC


A celebration of the work of The Jazz Drama Program with Artistic Director Eli Yamin, special guest Mercedes Ellington and honoring Dr. William Rodriguez. 


Sunday, June 3
Evan Christopher at Avatar
Evan Christopher at The Jazz Drama Program recording session, Avatar Studios

2pm reception
3pm performance

Purchase Tickets

Urban Stages
259 West 30th Street (bet 7th and 8th Avenues)
New York, New York