The Montgomery County Music Teachers Association recognizes Jordan Kitt’s Music

(pictured left to right: Cynthia Cathcart, President of the MCMTA, Ray Fugere, CFO of Jordan Kitt’s Music and Alice Ma, President Elect of the MCMTA.)

Jordan Kitt’s Music was pleased to have been recognized by the MCMTA (The Montgomery County Music Teachers Association) in appreciation of recent service to the their education community.

Jordan Kitt’s has worked closely with the Montgomery County Music Teachers Association for years in helping to provide its teachers and students with special resources, including the use of its 10,000 square foot piano sales and Music Education Center on Parklawn Drive in Rockville.

The MCMTA is a non-profit organization of independent music teachers representing private music teachers of all instruments and is affiliated with the Maryland State Music Teachers association (MSMTA) and the Music Teacher National Association (MTNA). Membership in MCMTA is available to all members of the state organization.

MCMTA was founded in 1965 with 25 members as a local chapter of the MTNA. With a current membership over 225 teachers, MCMTA is the largest chapter in Maryland.

For more information about the MCMTA, visit here…

The Grand Opening of Jordan Kitt’s New Rockville Showroom and Music Education Center

On January 25th, Jordan Kitt’s Music celebrated the grand opening of its flagship showroom and Music Education Center in Rockville, MD with a special concert and reception.

Grand Opening
Tony DeSare performs to a capacity crowd at the new Jordan Kitt’s Rockville Showroom

The Grand Opening Concert featured the enormous talents of Tony DeSare, who enthralled a capacity audience of just under 100 with a performance melding contemporary, jazz, pop, and classical piano.

Named a Rising Star Male Vocalist in Downbeat magazine, DeSare has lived up to this distinction by winning critical and popular acclaim for his concert performances throughout North America and abroad. From jazz clubs to Carnegie Hall to Las Vegas headlining with Don Rickles and major symphony orchestras, DeSare has brought his fresh take on old school class around the globe. DeSare has three top ten Billboard jazz albums under his belt and has been featured on the CBS Early Show, NPR, A Prairie Home Companion, the Today Show and his music has been posted by social media celebrity juggernaut, George Takei.

Jordan Kitt's Grand Opening
(L to R) Chris Syllaba, CEO of Jordan KItt’s Music, Tony DeSare, Ray Fugere, CFO of Jordan Kitt’s Music.

In an effort to expand its showroom, recital facility and Music Education Center, as well as consolidate it’s warehouse from a separate facility into an adjoining one, Jordan Kitt’s Music moved into this new location in December, and became fully open in mid January. The new space is more convenient to customers accessing the store from the beltway, and offers more than 5,000 square feet of new & used pianos from manufacturers such as Yamaha, Bosendorfer, Mason & Hamlin, Roland, Cristofori and others.

Recital Hall
A reception was held in the new recital facility designed for audiences of up to 90, and featuring a Yamaha concert grand for performance.

The facility also has a greatly expanded 1,500 square foot Music Education Center, offering piano instruction to hundreds of students weekly.  It includes private teaching studios complete with performance grade pianos, a large group teaching facility, a waiting area for parents, and a recital hall for seating of up to 90 complete with a Yamaha CF series concert grand piano.

The store expansion in Montgomery County marks Jordan Kitt’s Music’s 105th year of continuous service to the customers, institutions and piano students in metropolitan Washington, D.C. and continues to be the area’s (and one of the nation’s) oldest continuously operating music stores.  Jordan Kitt’s Music has matched the perfect piano with over 250,000 customers since 1912, as well as having taught over one million piano lessons.

MSMTA
(L to R) Michiko Yurko, member of Maryland State Music Teachers Association (MSMTA), Chris Syllaba, CEO of Jordan Kitt’s Music, Artist Tony DeSare, Lily Chang, founder International Young Artist Piano Competition (IYAPC) and member MSMTA, Alice Shiu, a teacher at the new Rockville Music Education Center and member MSMTA, and Ray Fugere, CFO of Jordan Kitt’s Music

The new showroom and Music Education Center is located at 11726 Parklawn Drive in Rockville, just 2.6 miles from the Washington Beltway (495) off the Rockville Pike (Rte 355) exit.  Anyone wishing to find out more information about lessons, the recital facility, home or event rentals or information about new or used products should contact us today at info@jordankitts.com

 

 

Jordan Kitt’s CEO elected to the NAMM Board of Directors

Just days ago, the National Association of Music Merchants elected a new board of Directors, including the appointment of Chris Syllaba, President and CEO of Jordan Kitt’s Music.

NAMM, the National Association of Music Merchants, commonly called NAMM in reference to the organization’s popular NAMM trade shows, is the not-for-profit association that promotes the pleasures and benefits of making music and strengthens the $17 billion global music products industry. It serves as a hub for people wanting to seek out the newest innovations in musical products, recording technology, sound and lighting. NAMM’s activities and programs are designed to promote music making to people of all ages.

NAMM welcomed the following members to the organization’s Board of Directors: Lauren Haas Amanfoh, President, Royalton Music Center, Inc.; Bryan Bradley, Senior Vice President/General Manager, HARMAN International; Philip Cajka, President and CEO, Audio-Technica U.S., Inc.; Kathy Donahoe, President and Member Partner, American Way Marketing, LLC.; Alun Hughes, Managing Director, British Band Instrument Company Ltd.; J. Scott Mandeville, President, Tim’s Music; Eric Matzat, President, Palen Music Center, Inc.; and Chris Syllaba, President/CEO, Jordan Kitt’s Music.

Jordan Kitt’s Music was asked to be a part of this extraordinary organization for a number of reasons related to its own community outreach efforts, including:

    • Its participation in the Music Education Advocacy DC Fly-In, an annual advocacy effort organized by the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) to promote music education in our public schools.
    • A partnership with Strathmore, supporting annual student concerts for Montgomery County Public School 2nd and 5th grade students resulting in 20K+ students each year being exposed to music and the different instruments of the orchestra.
    • Its presence on the Give a Note Foundation Board of Directors: formed by leaders of NAfME (National Association for Music Education) to “nurture, grow, and strengthen music education opportunities – every student, every school, every community.”
    • CEO’s involvement with classical music outreach as a member of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra (VSO) Trustee Council.
    • Its commitment to community music outreach through free public concerts featuring area talents at its recital facility
    • Providing music education through approximately 20K lessons taught per year out of five education centers in 2 major markets at Jordan Kitt’s Music School.
    • Its support of music education by providing recital hall, rehearsal rooms and meeting facilities for area music teachers, local Music Teacher Associations, and Piano Guild auditions.
    • The support of local Piano Technician Guild (PTG) meetings and organizing manufacturer training and education opportunities for the local piano technician community.
    • The support of numerous Music Festivals and organizations, including the Washington International Piano Festival, local Music Teacher Associations, and the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA).

Read more here.

Jordan Kitt’s goes to Strathmore for Europe’s Finest Pianos Concert & Show

Two weeks ago, Jordan Kitt’s Music was proud to be a part of the largest European factory piano event in area history at Strathmore Mansion, featuring a unique collection of extremely rarte pianos from Bösendorfer or Steingraeber & Söhne.

A special performance by world renowned concert pianist Eric Himy played to a capacity crowd, followed by a show and sale event on Sunday. The event also included the the extraordinary Oscar Peterson Signature Edition Bösendorfer, a remarkable instrument capable of recreating “live” performances originally recorded by one of history’s greatest jazz pianists.

Boesendorfer piano

A unique sampling of pianos from this event are being hosted at area Jordan Kitt’s Music locations throughout the season. For specific model information, call (301) 770-9081 in Maryland, or (703) 573-6070 in Virginia.

Jordan Kitt’s hosts Teacher Workshop on Technology

This past Wednesday 7/13, Jordan Kitt’s Music was proud to host “Technology to Improve Student Motivation” featuring clinician Linda Christensen, Ph.D.

There was a great turnout from teachers looking to stay engaged with students during the summer months using modern technology to keep them practicing, even while on vacation.

Linda Christensen received her Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma, where she studied pedagogy with E.L. Lancaster and Jane Magrath. After over 20 years as a Professor of Music and Music Technology, she is now the Institutional Sales Director for Maryland/DC for Jordan Kitts Music in Rockville, Maryland. She is a frequent presenter for MTNA, NCKP, and many other national and international conferences.

To get on the mailing list for future education seminars, contact us at info@jordankitts.com

Jordan Kitt’s Music receives gift of original art after Awadajin Pratt visit

Following Jordan Kitt’s Music special presentation of Awadajin Pratt at the Woodburn School for the Fine & Communicative Arts, one student was so moved by the performance that she was inspired to create this wonderful piece of art commemorating the occasion.

Isabelle Campen, a 6th grade student at Woodburn, painted a 3 dimensional work of art created in layers titled “Awadagin’s Notes” and presented it to Chris Syllaba, President of Jordan Kitt’s Music.

This wonderful artwork is proudly on display at the Rockville location, so look for it next time you visit!

Jordan Kitt’s chosen to provide Yamaha Piano for Barry Manilow at DC’s “A Capital Fourth” Celebration

barry manilow 4th cr

Jordan Kitt’s Music was pleased to be selected as the provider of the Yamaha concert grand piano played by Barry Manilow at Washington D.C.’s “A Capital Fourth” Celebration on July 4th in the nation’s capital. As Washington DC’s most trusted home of new & used pianos since 1912, Jordan Kitt’s is the proud to be selected as the provider of Yamaha and Bosendorfer concert grands for international artists at some of the areas most respected venues, such as Strathmore, The Kennedy Center and many others.

Read more about the event here via the Associated Press:

WASHINGTON (AP) – Barry Manilow sang a medley of “Let Freedom Ring” to lead off a booming fireworks display on the National Mall.

Manilow’s performance put the nation’s capital in a patriotic mood, opening the Independence Day concert that preceded the fireworks display.

Manilow also sang “America the Beautiful” and “One Voice” with the National Symphony Orchestra. Nicole Scherzinger sang the national anthem, country singer Hunter Hayes sang his new hit single “21” and KC and the Sunshine Band got the crowd on their feet.

Security was tight with officers checking all bags. Visitors had to pass through metal detectors near the U.S. Capitol lawn.

Later, the National Symphony played the “1812 Overture” as cannons roared amid the explosion of fireworks near the National Mall.

full article here

Jordan Kitt’s goes to the Capitol to promote music in schools…

DC group picture 6-15

The 11th Annual “NAMM DC Advocacy Fly-in” Delegation with a view to the US Capitol

Jordan Kitt’s Music, the DC area’s oldest piano retailer, again advocates for music education on Capitol Hill.

In May 2015, Chris Syllaba, President & CEO of Jordan Kitt’s Music, again joined members of NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) in advocating for the importance of music education in our public schools. This year, a record 76 members from the music retailing and manufacturing industry joined forces to meet with Members of Congress and their legislative staff to encourage the reauthorization of ESEA (Elementary and Secondary Education Act), including identifying “music” as a core academic subject. There was significantly more optimism among Members of Congress and their staff this year now that the Senate HELP (Health, Education, Labor and Pensions) Committee has voted unanimously to approve the bipartisan re-draft of the ESEA re-authorization bill titled the “Every Child Achieves Act of 2015.”

As with last year, the nearly week-long effort started with a “day of service” on Monday, May 18. This day was dedicated to Fly-in delegates spending time making music with fifth grade students at Bancroft Elementary School in Washington DC. Former NY Yankee and Latin GRAMMY-nominated musician Bernie Williams and opera singer Carla Dirlikov kicked off the effort with a brief musical performance. Nathan Diamond, Director of Arts for DC Public Schools, made remarks along with Joe Lamond, NAMM President, and Mary Luehrsen, NAMM Director of Public Affairs. Following this, delegates assisted the kids in three different music making experiences: A guitar class was facilitated by GRAMMY-nominated music educator Glen McCarthy, a ukulele class was led by award-winning folk duo Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer and a drum circle was headed up by John Fitzgerald of Remo Inc.

On Tuesday, delegates participated in a day of advocacy training starting with comments by Larry Morton, NAMM Chairman, and an address by Darrell Ayres, Vice President of Education, at the John F. Kennedy Center. One of the day’s presentations was made by Peter Grunwald, founder and President, Grunwald Associates, introducing the results of a recent and exhaustive study indicating the overwhelming support of school music programs by two key constituencies – parents and teachers. Among numerous findings in this study titled “Striking a Chord”, 77% of teachers and 64% of parents say access to music education is “extremely important” or “very important”. Also, 87% of teachers and 79% of parents “strongly believe music education has a positive impact on overall academic performance.”

This was followed by further training  throughout the afternoon and evening at the Capitol Hill offices of of Nelson, Mullins, Riley & Scarborough, NAMM’s tireless advocacy partner and consultancy. The sessions there were kicked off by Leo Coco, Senior Policy Advisor at Nelson Mullins. Also joining the group again as in past years was Richard Riley, former US Secretary of Education. He provided the delegates with invaluable insights and opened doors for the group on Capitol Hill. These training sessions were key in preparing the NAMM Fly-in delegation for a full day of congressional meetings the following day.

On Wednesday the real work commenced early in the morning on Capitol Hill. NAMM delegates organized and attended over 130 meetings with Senators, Representatives and their staff, representing a majority of the States of the Union. The message from the over 9,200 NAMM member companies representing the views of almost 430,000 employees and constituents was that music and arts education in American schools is of the utmost importance.

In the evening, a dinner and reception followed a successful day of music education advocacy at Nelson Mullins. The guest of honor was Congressman John Lewis (GA) who shared a powerful message about music’s role during times of change. “Without music the civil rights movement would have been like a bird without wings” said the Congressman. NAMM President Joe Lamond presented Congressman Lewis with a SupportMusic Award. The Fly-in culminated with a celebration of music overlooking the Capitol on the 9th floor terrace of Nelson Mullins with Bernie Williams and his band. Here Mr. Williams was surprised with SupportMusic Award as well.

Thursday morning concluded the week’s efforts with a SupportMusic Coalition call. Hundreds of individuals from around the country listened in on the call as the delegation summarized the week’s activities and proclaimed another overall successful advocacy effort.  For more information, visit http://www.namm.org

JKM joins baseball great Bernie Williams & NAMM to promote music in schools

DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Bernie Williams interview on Fox 5 in which he discusses his passion for furthering music in public education.

Jordan Kitt’s President & CEO Chris Syllaba (seen at 3:09) joined Bernie and the National Association of Music Merchants in DC last week to encourage congressional support for quality, comprehensive music education for all children. This effort came as Congress looks to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). The 2015 fly-in, NAMM’s largest ever, included a day of service at D.C.’s Bancroft Elementary, advocacy training at the Kennedy Center and more than 130 meetings with members of Congress.

“Right now, Congress is working to update the national education bill. This bill would impact 50 million children, shaping U.S. education policy for years, if not decades to come. A record number of NAMM members took time away from business and family to represent our industry and ensure that music and the arts remain core subjects getting the funding they deserve,” said Joe Lamond, president and CEO of NAMM. “We are grateful for their efforts and believe that their passionate voice in support of music education will help achieve our vision of a world where every child has a right to music education.”

Seventy-six NAMM members, former New York Yankee and Latin GRAMMY-nominated musician Bernie Williams, actor Doc Shaw and more fortified the eleventh annual fly-in to reinforce the importance of music education for all children. In face-to-face meetings with members of Congress, NAMM members and artists urged their representatives to designate core academic subjects including music and the arts in ESEA. The Senate HELP Committee’s version of ESEA includes ‘music’ as a core subject. That version now goes to the full Senate.

“When we saw that the education bill was moving through the Senate and that the language included music, we knew that we couldn’t miss this year’s fly-in,” said Scott Abrahamson from Rick’s Musical Instruments, Inc. “This issue and advocating for it is more important than ever!”

A new NAMM Foundation-funded, nationwide study of 1,000 teachers and 800 parents finds strong support for music education at all grade levels. “Striking a Chord: The Public’s Hopes and Beliefs for K-12 Music Education in the United States 2015” was unveiled at the National Press Club during the fly-in. The study finds that strong majorities of teachers and parents say music education is “very” or “extremely” important and should continue to be funded, even at the expense of other programs and classes.

NAMM members presented a SupportMusic Award to Congressman John Lewis (GA), who shared a powerful message about music’s role during times of change, “Without music the civil rights movement would have been like a bird without wings.” The fly-in culminated with a celebration of music education overlooking the Capitol where NAMM members surprised Bernie Williams with a SupportMusic Award. “Obviously, there’s an artistic and creative side to music, but to me, the important thing is that it’s a vehicle to enhance the learning ability of a child,” said Williams, joining the NAMM fly-in for the fifth time this year. “Music helps with the development of the brain and how well students do in all of their other subjects.”

The fly-in kicked off with a day of service at Bancroft Elementary. Fifth graders jammed on guitars, drums and ukuleles with NAMM members, Williams, opera singer Carla Dirlikov, award-winning folk duo Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer, GRAMMY-nominated music educator Glen McCarthy, and John Fitzgerald from Remo Inc. The music will play on at Bancroft following NAMM’s visit thanks to generous donations from Rhythm Band Instruments, Middle C Music, Remo Inc., Deering Banjos, Musical Innovations, Groth Music Company, Spicer’s Music LLC, The Cavanaugh Company, Needham Music, GAMA, Music for Life, Kala Brand Music Co. and the NAMM Foundation.

These D.C. Fly-In efforts reinforce NAMM’s vision of a world in which every child has a recognized right to be taught music, with NAMM members as passionate champions of that right. Hear highlights from this week’s efforts and the latest on ESEA authorization during the May 21 SupportMusic Coalition call.

For more information, visit namm.org

Jordan Kitt’s Music provides the Yamaha DCFX concert grand piano for Chick Corea at the Kennedy Center

chickcorea

Herbie Hancock (left) and Chick Corea perform head-to-head at The Kennedy Center on Friday. Sitting between them: a combined 34 Grammys. (Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post)

If ovations were cherry blossoms, Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock would have been up to their knees in petals at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall on Friday night. Yet, as pleased as they were with the resounding response, there were moments during the nearly two-hour, sold-out performance when the jazz-piano legends seemed to find even greater delight in each other’s company and in the playful gamesmanship that ensued.

It’s been nearly 40 years since the release of “An Evening With Herbie Hancock & Chick Corea: In Concert,” a landmark compilation of live tracks that still serves as a template for the duo’s live performances. Friday night’s concert, presented by Washington Performing Arts, reminded listeners time and again that some jazz virtuosos seem destined to share the stage. At one point, in fact, the pianists marveled at how their careers initially interlocked a half-century ago. First, in the early 1960s, Hancock replaced Corea in Mongo Santamaria’s band; then, several years later, Corea replaced Hancock in Miles Davis’s group.

These days, Corea, 73, and Hancock, who turned 75 on Sunday, are all about mutual admiration, and their engaging camaraderie onstage couldn’t be more evident. How best to elicit a smile, a laugh or, better yet, a startled expression from a distinguished peer? Some surefire maneuvering — and outmaneuvering — came into play Friday night. Tumultuous crescendos surged forward, only to stop on a dime. A solitary note hovered near the end of a coda, toying with listener expectations and thwarting a timely resolution. Countless countermelodies surfaced in myriad forms, snugly fitting into place like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.  Read more here

or find out more about Yamaha pianos here…