Black and gold graphic bar
  Feb. 7, 2007

Sean Kearns
Media Relations Director
(323) 343-3050
Margie Yu
Public Affairs Specialist
(323) 343-3047



Cal State L.A. 
Office of Public Affairs 
(323) 343-3050 
Fax: (323) 343-6405

Note to Editors: Photos of Ardie Bryant and Bobbee Zeno are available upon request.

Osher Institute brings
jazz, blues, tap to campus

"‘Salute to Black Heritage" at Cal State L.A. Feb. 16

Los Angeles, CA – Opening with a set of jazz and blues led by Louis Van Taylor with guest vocalist Sherry Pruitt, the OLLI Salute to Black Heritage will be presented at Cal State L.A. on Friday, February 16, 1:30 – 4:30 p.m., at the Golden Eagle Ballroom (third floor of The Golden Eagle building). The free program, sponsored by the University’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI), will celebrate National Black History Month with live music and a presentation by Ardie Bryant.

Taylor currently performs with Michael Bolton, Kool and the Gang, and the Gerald Wilson Orchestra. He also teaches music at the Dorothy Kirby Detention Center. Pruitt performs with the Blues Power All-Stars, does session work with Cold 6 Records, works with The Terraplane Band and The Black Shadows Band, and has completed two CDs.

Bryant, who teaches jazz tap and history at Cal State L.A., will present “Passing it On: Lest We Forget.” Known as the “innovator of modern jazz tap” and the “ambassador of tap,” Bryant’s career has spanned seven decades, including performances with premiere jazz artists: Duke Ellington, Nat “King” Cole, Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker.

Bryant is best known for developing a new style of tap, called “Modern Jazz Tap,” and for designing a unique, three-drum platform upon which he performs jazz tap percussion.

Bryant’s memories of jazz and tap moves are documented in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History as part of the Jazz Oral History Project. In 2006, he was named a Los Angeles Cultural Treasure by the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.

The program will be moderated by Bobbee Zeno, host of “Blues Power” and founding producer/co-host of “Experience Talks” on KPFK-FM. Zeno has been involved in the creation of numerous festivals, fundraisers and innovative arts and cultural programs in the Los Angeles area for more than 20 years. Currently the director of community programs at Burbank Senior Artists Colony, Zeno recently received the ‘Most Distinguished Man Award” from the JBead Foundation for his extensive community work.

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute—directed by Connie Corley, professor of social work at Cal State L.A.—was established through a grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation, which has funded more than 90 similar programs throughout the country.

Cal State L.A. is at the Eastern Avenue exit, along the San Bernardino Freeway, near the interchange of the 10 and 710 freeways. Public permit dispenser parking is available at Lots C and F or upper level of Parking Structure 2.

Though the program is free, reservations are required by Feb. 14. For details, call (323) 343-4695 or email lifelearncsula@yahoo.com

Working for California since 1947: The 175-acre hilltop campus of California State University, Los Angeles is at the heart of a major metropolitan city, just five miles from Los Angeles’ civic and cultural center. More than 20,000 students and 190,000 alumni—with a wide variety of interests, ages and backgrounds—reflect the city’s dynamic mix of populations. Six colleges offer nationally recognized science, arts, business, criminal justice, engineering, nursing, education and humanities programs, among others, led by an award-winning faculty. Cal State L.A. is home to the critically-acclaimed Luckman Jazz Orchestra and to a unique university center for gifted students as young as 12. Programs that provide exciting enrichment opportunities to students and community include an NEH- and Rockefeller-supported humanities center; a NASA-funded center for space research; and a growing forensic science program, to be housed in the Hertzberg-Davis Forensic Science Center now under construction. www.calstatela.edu


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