Monk Institute Sets 2008 Competition Schedule

Posted in News on March 12, 2008

The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz has announced that the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition finals will take place on Sunday, October 26 at 5 p.m. at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. The semi-finals will take place on the campus of UCLA at Schoenberg Hall on Saturday, October 25 from 1-5 p.m. This year’s competition will feature the saxophone, with ten of the world’s most talented young saxophonists performing in front of an esteemed panel of judges including Jimmy Heath, Wayne Shorter, 1991 Competition winner Joshua Redman, and others to be announced.

The winner of the Competition will receive a $20,000 scholarship, second place a $10,000 scholarship and third place a $5,000 scholarship. The Competition application and guidelines are available on the Monk Institute website,

The Institute has also announced today that the application for the Thelonious Monk International Composer’s Competition is available on the Institute’s website. Sponsored for the past 15 years by BMI, the Composers Competition awards a $10,000 grand prize to the young composer who best demonstrates originality, creativity and excellence in jazz composition.

“A mutual desire to draw attention to the central role of the composer in creating new works for the jazz idiom, a role epitomized by Thelonious Monk, led to our collaboration with the Institute 15 years ago in developing the Composers Competition, ” said BMI President and CEO Del Bryant. “As with the Institute’s main competition, the process has identified some of the most exciting young jazz composing talent from around the world, and played a significant role in launching and supporting careers for the young composer/ artists who are creating a new repertoire that will be treasured by generations to come.”

In addition, the Monk Institute and Concord Music Group jointly announced an historic partnership that will guarantee the 2008 winner a record deal from Concord. This is the first time in the 21-year history of the competition that the winner will walk off stage with a guaranteed recording contract and the first time Concord Music Group has ever entered into a partnership of this kind. Concord Music Group plans to release the winner’s album in mid-2009.

An All-Star Concert Gala to benefit the Institute’s jazz education programs will immediately follow the Saxophone Competition and will include the presentation of the 2008 Herbie Hancock Humanitarian Award. Details on the benefit concert line-up and the 2008 Herbie Hancock Humanitarian Award recipient will be announced in the coming months.

“I am so pleased that the Monk Competition will return to Los Angeles and I’m inspired at this historic partnership with Concord. What an incredible opportunity Concord and the Institute are offering young musicians. This is truly a visionary moment in the history of jazz and I am certain that this year’s winner, like many past winners, will have a significant impact on the future of music”, said Herbie Hancock, Institute Chairman and 2008 Grammy Album of the Year winner.

“Today, the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition has been taken to a new level. For 20 years, the competition has consistently discovered some of the most successful young jazz artists of our time. Our partnership with Concord ensures that the competition continues to be the most prestigious and influential jazz competition in the world by identifying and showcasing the young artists who are the future of jazz”, said Thelonious Monk, Jr., Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz.


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