Gerald Clayton Masterclass via Yamaha’s Remote Lesson


Jordan Kitt’s Music partnered with DCPS, The Kennedy Center Jazz Club, and the Yamaha Disklavier Education Network to bring an unprecedented learning experience to students at five District High Schools.

On Friday, February 28th, Grammy Nominated Pianist Gerald Clayton gave a special masterclass with local piano student Joshua Jenkins from The Ellington School For The Performing Arts. Such masterclasses are not only instrumental for the development of the student participating, but are extremely valuable learning experiences for those students sitting in the audience. While time and travel constraints have historically limited the number of students that can participate in such an event in the past (the logistics of bringing in more than a few area students for one of these events would be overwhelming and has limited these opportunities in the past), new technology allowed us to bring this learning opportunity to a record number of students in five separate locations.

B7FE6CAE-4120-4B3E-9C29-C96EABDB8577Yamaha’s patented Remote Lesson and Remote Live Technologies allow students with access to current model Disklavier Pianos to communicate with and interact with teachers located around the world. When one pianist plays a note on a Disklavier piano, the optic sensors within the instrument capture every possible bit of information about the note played. The velocity of the key and hammer, the length of time sustained, the attack and release technique, all are captured and transmitted over via the internet to other Disklavier pianos which faithfully reproduce every nuance of the original performance. This gives the pianist the literal opportunity to perform on multiple pianos simultaneously. Thanks to this amazing technology and the acquisition of five of these amazing instruments by the District of Columbia Public Schools, music students at Ellington, Ballou, Wilson, McKinley, and Woodson High Schools were all able to participate in this lesson.

BAD9FAC1-24B9-43B0-B6E9-0893ECB608F6The response to the class was overwhelming, as students and instructors were thrilled with the potential opportunities awaiting them. “ Today was a magical, memorable, historical jazzy/technological event!!!” tweeted Lori Williams, instructor at Wilson High School and a wonderful Jazz musician in her own right. “The Yamaha Disklavier provides unprecedented opportunities for students and schools to engage with musicians and teachers they might not have been able to before, and we hope that the D.C. public schools are the first of many across the country to take advantage of this dynamic connectivity.” enthused Yamaha Institutional Solutions’ Walt Straiton.

For more information regarding Remote Lesson and Disklavier Educational Opportunities, please contact Brad Prentice at (202) 578-0109 or

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