JAI Rebrands as JazzArts Charlotte to Celebrate 10th Year

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – March 30, 2019 – Since 2009, Jazz Arts Initiative has dedicated itself to improving and expanding the jazz music landscape in the Charlotte area. Now, as part of their year-long 10th anniversary celebration, the non-profit organization is rebranding as JazzArts Charlotte with plans for continued growth and expansion of its acclaimed signature jazz music and education programs.

International jazz legend Wynton Marsalis joined JazzArts Charlotte President and CEO Lonnie Davis on Saturday, March 30 for a rebranding kickoff event held for sponsors, volunteers and local dignitaries. Marsalis told the standing-room-only crowd.

“It’s almost impossible to believe it’s been ten years,” said Davis. “It is only fitting that during this milestone year we adopt our new name and identity, JazzArts Charlotte. These simple words perfectly tell our story and sole purpose: the promotion, education and preservation of America’s one true original art form – jazz – in the greater Charlotte region.”

Displaced from their native, New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, Davis and her husband, JazzArts Charlotte Artistic Director Ocie Davis, settled in Charlotte and immediately set out to raise the city’s jazz music profile. With signature performance and education programs like the acclaimed JAZZ ROOM @ The Stage Door Theater, Jazz Youth Ensembles + Workshops, JazzArts Summer Music Camp, among others, the organization quickly became a favorite of the Charlotte arts scene.

Since their inception, JazzArts Charlotte has offered nearly 200 jazz performances, creating a presence and opportunity for many exceptional local and regional musicians as well as attracting national and international talent to the community. In addition, over 50,000 students have been reached through 450 hours of annual instruction each year. Many of these students have gone on to attend some of the top music colleges and embark on successful musical careers.

“Jazz lives here in Charlotte. Today, we are excited to recognize and celebrate that with the community,” said Davis. “We welcome musicians, educators, students, and audiences of all ages to get involved and be a part of JazzArts Charlotte.” For more information, visit or call 704-334-3900.

About JazzArts Charlotte

JazzArts Charlotte (formerly Jazz Arts Initiative), is a non-profit 501©(3) organization dedicated to the promotion, education, preservation of jazz and related art forms in the greater Charlotte region. Started in 2009, the organization is comprised of arts patrons, educators, performing jazz artists, business leaders, and volunteers. Their mission focuses on three program development areas: Jazz Education, Performance, and Musician Support. These three elements were established to help nurture a future audience and preserve the tradition of this great American Art Form, Jazz. For more information, visit, and follow JazzArts Charlotte on Facebook and on Twitter.

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