Hart Community Performing Arts Series receives prestigious jazz award.

October 31, 2022

Hart Community Performing Arts Series receives prestigious jazz award.

Benny Benack III

HART — The Hart Community Performing Arts Series has received a prestigious John Stites Jazz Award in support of its upcoming Nov. 18 concert. The concert will feature NYC-based trumpeter and vocalist Benny Benack III and his combo, along with the highly regarded jazz vocalist Lauren Henderson.

As part of its education mission, the Series will host a jazz master class featuring Benack and Henderson for high school jazz band musicians on that Friday afternoon. Students from seven area high schools have been invited to attend. Information about the concert is available at the series website, hartseries.org.

Lauren Henderson

John Stites grew up in Kalamazoo, where he learned to play the trumpet and developed an interest in jazz. He was successful in a number of professions during his lifetime, including that of a touring jazz musician, a professional photographer, an audio production specialist, owner and operator of a successful recording studio, and an instructor of recording technology at Kalamazoo College.

Over the course of 30 years, John recorded over 3,000 CDs and innumerable audio tapes. After his passing, a trust that he had established created the John Stites Jazz Artist Organization, honoring him and his passion for jazz. The organization funds advanced studies for emerging and established professional jazz musicians concerts, competitions and projects that expand jazz audiences and the appreciation of jazz in or near communities in the Midwest. The Hart Community Performing Arts Series is honored to be recognized by the Stites organization for its jazz programming and educational efforts.

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